New York City, April 5: Several patients infected with the novel coronavirus were mistakenly transferred to a USNS Comfort, 1000-bed hospital ship. The vessel was meant to be "virus-free and used for only trauma patients". The number of COVID-19 patients brought in the military ship is estimated to be “less than five," Fox News reported. USNS Comfort, 1000-Bed Hospital Ship, Docked at New York Harbor Port As COVID-19 Death Toll Cross 3000 in USA.
These patients were transferred to the ship on Friday. At the time of screening, they did not show any positive symptoms. The hospital ship, which arrived in New York City on Monday, has been struggling to stay in a COVID-19 free "bubble".
According to chief Pentagon spokesperson Jonathan Hoffman, the vessel currently has "couple dozen" patients right now. As a part of the protocol, the patients onboard USNS Comfort were tested for coronavirus. The swab test results came back a few hours later, till that time the patient remained in isolation and slept onboard the ship.
"We consider the USNS Comfort to be in a bubble," said medical officer Captain Patrick Amersbach as he described the procedures followed by the vessel's crew to protect it from the virus. Patients directly arrive in the ship from New York hospitals and are screened for coronavirus in advance.