USNS Comfort equipped with 1,000 beds arrives in NYC

The USNS Comfort, a Navy hospital ship with 1,000 beds, 12 operating rooms and a full medical staff, arrived at Manhattan's Pier 90 Monday morning. The floating hospital will be used to treat non-coronavirus patients to free up space in city hospitals.

USNS Comfort, escorted by Coast Guard, NYPD and FDNY boats, arrives in New York City, March 30, 2020. (U.S. Coast Guard)

The floating hospital will be used to treat non-coronavirus patients to free up space in city hospitals. (March 30, 2020 )

GO INSIDE USNS COMFORT AND USNS MERCY

The ship left Norfolk, Virginia, Saturday where it was docked, for maintenance. The Navy was asked earlier this month to "expedite" the maintenance.

The military sent the USNS Mercy, its sister ship, to California to help cities there overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients.

The ships' personnel are trained for combat casualty care and do not treat contagious diseases like the coronavirus. 

MORE CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

"Our understanding is that the intent is the ships will be used to take non-coronavirus patients, which is what our staffs are best assigned and organized to do," Brig. Gen. Paul Friedrichs, the Joint Staff surgeon and principal medical adviser to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said earliter this month.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper has said that military medical personnel and military medical facilities are better suited to trauma care than contagions.

USNS Comfort, escorted by Coast Guard, NYPD and FDNY boats, arrives in New York City, March 30, 2020. (U.S. Coast Guard)

"We are fighting a war against this pandemic and we know that two of the most effective ways to stop it is by reducing density and increasing our hospital capacity so our healthcare system is not overwhelmed," Cuomo said in a statement. "The deployment of the USNS Comfort to New York is an extraordinary but necessary step to help ensure our state has the capacity to handle an influx of patients with COVID-19 and continue our efforts to contain the virus."

USNS Comfort, escorted by Coast Guard, NYPD and FDNY boats, arrives in New York City, March 30, 2020. (U.S. Coast Guard)

The USNS Comfort docks at Pier 90 in Manhattan. (March 30, 2020)