The USNS Comfort has been converted to 500 beds for Covid19 patients. According to this:
All beds are full. Besides because ‘Trump’, is there any reasoning as to why it’s leaving at this time? Trump does say he talked to Gov Cuomo though Cuomo has yet to confirm that AFAIK, and sorry can’t believe Trump, his credibility is about as low as it goes, so no reason was given.
AIUI, that was the original intent, but then it was reconfigured for CoVid since at the time there was still the worry that the outbreak would completely overrun landside resources.
This is similar to what happened with the *Comfort *in Puerto Rico after the hurricane disaster – it’s physically complicated ***and ***involves a lot of extra paperwork to transfer a civilian patient to a hospital ship parked offshore so it ends up being underutilized unless the landside facilities are really overwhelmed.
This New York Times article talks about some reasons why the hospital ship wasn’t as useful as hoped. It was built to treat battlefield injuries (gunshot wounds, bomb blast trauma) and has narrow cots instead of hospital beds, as civilians would expect. And the patients couldn’t be sent directly to the ship but had to go to a hospital first and then be transferred to the ship.