The Pentagon introduced at this time that a further 1,000 energetic obligation navy personnel might be made accessible to assist with a whole-of-government method to combating the nationwide COVID-19 pandemic.
Throughout a gathering with the media at this time, Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby instructed reporters that subsequent week the primary of a further 1,000 energetic obligation service members might be teamed as much as deploy to civilian hospitals throughout the U.S. to assist take strain off medical staffs there as they battle the consequences of the omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus.
Already as many as 400 energetic obligation troops are helping civilian hospitals throughout the USA, Kirby stated, and the extra 1,000 will increase their ongoing work to help federal and state companions, Kirby stated.
Proper now, it is anticipated the primary wave of these servicemembers might be headed to 6 services, together with Cleveland Clinic; Coney Island Hospital in Brooklyn, New York; Rhode Island Hospital in Windfall; Henry Ford Hospital simply exterior of Detroit; College of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque; and College Hospital in Newark, New Jersey.
“They will be offering reduction, triaging sufferers, serving to to decompress overwhelmed emergency departments and liberating up healthcare suppliers to proceed different life-saving care,” Kirby stated. “They are going to be working alongside well being care employees on the frontlines to present them the help they want. So it isn’t nearly COVID medication essentially, they’ll be appearing as a reduction valve for our civilian well being care employees.”
Proper now, Kirby stated, it isn’t clear from the place the energetic obligation personnel will come, although he did verify that it’ll doubtless be people known as upon to take part, relatively than whole navy models.
“Most of those groups … they don’t seem to be coming from set models,” he stated. “These are personnel which are being assessed from their very own navy remedy services or the place they’re across the nation and original collectively into groups. So it’s extra of a person deployment scheme than it’s a unit deployment scheme.”
The press secretary additionally stated it isn’t clear now how lengthy these deployments will final.
“No person expects that these deployments might be open-ended and you recognize, over a protracted time period,” he stated. “Nor have we set finite particular durations of time on it proper now. They’re short-term deployments. We do not suppose that they’ll final an inordinate period of time. However it’s a likelihood to only relieve the strain.”
Early on within the COVID-19 disaster, the U.S. navy arrange area hospitals and deployed medical ships, together with personnel, in anticipation of seeing large numbers of COVID-19 infections overrunning the capability of metropolis hospitals. These numbers of sufferers by no means materialized and most of the services arrange by the Protection Division by no means noticed a major variety of sufferers.
This most up-to-date effort just isn’t the identical as efforts earlier on, Kirby stated.
“These are smaller groups and they’ll hospitals … brick and mortar hospitals, to assist alleviate the pressure on the well being care employees which are already there,” he stated. “All of them will not essentially be doing COVID-related stuff.”
As a substitute, he stated, navy personnel might be “taking on the slack” in these hospitals to assist docs and nurses get their very own work finished.
“The secretary is dedicated to this mission, and he is dedicated to assuaging the stress and strain on the civilian well being care system to the diploma that we will,” Kirby stated. “We will be watching it … in actual time and making selections about who to deploy, when to deploy, when to redeploy, based mostly on the necessity in these hospitals across the nation.”
Kirby additionally stated the division will control how the deployments have an effect on the division’s personal capability to supply medical care to its folks.
“These people are coming from navy services,” he stated. “We additionally should be conscious of our personal skill to run our personal services and to care for our troops and our households … we will be watching that as intently as we will, too.”