PUNTARENAS, Costa Rica – (NNS) -- The director of the Navy Nurse Corps visited hospital ship USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) during the Continuing Promise 2011 (CP11) mission stop in Puntarenas, Costa Rica, Aug. 9-10.
Rear Adm. Elizabeth Niemyer toured the ship, attended a luncheon and held an admiral's call for members of Comfort's nursing department.
"It was an honor and a privilege to have the director of the nurse corps visit USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) during the CP11 mission," said Capt. Anne Mitchell, director of nursing services. "The visit gave me the opportunity to share with Rear Adm. Niemyer all the great things the nurses are doing. It also gave the nurses an opportunity to meet the admiral and talk with her in a relaxed setting. I know that Rear Admiral Niemyer gained a great appreciation for the critical role that nursing has played during this mission on board the ship, at the medical sites and participating in subject matter expert exchanges."
Following the admiral's call, Niemeyer recognized some of the nurses who have made significant contributions to CP11 by presenting them with challenge coins.
"Admiral Niemyer's visit has been one of the bright moments in CP11," said Capt. Kathy Becker, USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) Medical Treatment Facility's executive officer. "I invited her to visit the ship in February of this year and I was very concerned that her schedule would not allow her to come, so it's been a wonderful surprise to have her come join us and to be able to meet not only with the nurses, but the rest of the crew as well."
Niemyer also visited Barranca Municipal Gym, the location of one of CP11's medical sites in Costa Rica.
"The work that I saw on board Comfort and at the medical site was absolutely fabulous," said Niemyer. "It fits into a greater picture of what the Navy is doing in terms of a global force for good, but also in terms of a strategic direction for our country and partnerships with our allies."
CP11 medical service providers performed 116 surgeries on board the ship and treated 7,607 Costa Ricans ashore during the 11-day mission stop.
"It was a wonderful opportunity to see many of the ship's crew performing what they do each and every day as corpsmen, nurses, and physicians as well as the support personnel. They are all incredibly impressive in their work and efforts that are making this mission a success," concluded Niemyer.
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