Skip to content

Coronavirus Response in Pictures: 'USNS Mercy' in Los Angeles

The hospital ship was deployed on the West Coast to treat non-COVID-19 patients

closeup of hospital ship with the identifier name mercy showing on its side

Gregory Bull/AP Photo

The USNS Mercy hospital ship sits at dock before its departure in San Diego, California.

En español | Since it was converted from a San Clemente–class supertanker into an acute surgical medical facility in 1986, the USNS Mercy, part of the Navy's Military Sealift Command, has provided humanitarian assistance and disaster relief around the world. More than 550,000 people have received care provided by it and its sister ship, USNS Comfort, since 2001. Today it is providing relief to Los Angeles hospitals strained by the number of patients infected with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

''I couldn't be more proud of our crew for all the hard work they did to get us here and ready in such a short time,'’ said Navy Capt. John Rotruck, commanding officer of the USNS Mercy. ‘'Being able to accept our first patients is a true testament of the teamwork between Mercy, the Navy, the state of California, the county of Los Angeles, and the city and Port of L.A.''