The US Navy announced on Sunday that the hospital ship USNS Comfort has discharged its last COVID-19 patient and is preparing to leave New York City, heading back to its homeport, the US Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia, by the end of this month.
The 894-foot floating military hospital has reportedly treated 182 COVID-19 patients since it docked in New York. The patient discharged on Sunday was the last aboard the ship. It’s unclear whether the patient has been transferred to another hospital or discharged completely.
U.S. Navy Lt. Anthony Waite, Jr. and Hospitalman Kaila Jenkins assist patients during discharge from the hospital ship #USNSComfort. The Comfort has been caring for patients and working with Javits New York Medical Station to relieve the New York City medical system. pic.twitter.com/KHtAFUV2DZ— U.S. Navy (@USNavy) April 27, 2020
“We are proud and humbled to have assisted New York and New Jersey in this capacity,” said Lt. Marycate Walsh, a Navy spokesperson, cited by Fox News.
The Comfort will be heading from Virginia, after undergoing maintenance and restocking, for another possible destination to assist in the response to the pandemic, said Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman, without providing a date for the ship’s new life-saving mission.
“[The USNS Comfort’s approaching departure] is a sure sign of modest progress in mitigating the virus in the nation's hardest-hit city and is a welcome sign,” Hoffman said.
Earlier in the day, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that the state’s daily COVID-19 death figure declined below 400 for the first this month.
As of Sunday, New York has confirmed 288,076 coronavirus-related infection cases, including 17,280 deaths. The overall COVID-19 infection figure of the United States stands at 965,426, with 55,383 deaths, according to data assembled by the Johns Hopkins University.