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U.S. Navy’s Humanitarian Mission Concludes in Philippines

17 August 2022

From Lt.j.g. Molly Sanders

PUERTO PRINCESA, Philippines – The Philippines phase of Pacific Partnership concluded in Puerto Princesa, aboard Military Sealift Command’s hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19), Aug. 16.

In the Philippines, the Pacific Partnership 2022 (PP22) team included representatives from the host nation, Australia, Chile, the Republic of Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States.

During the mission stop, the PP22 team provided medical care to more than 9,500 patients, including over 100 surgeries on board Mercy; 1200 veterinary treatments; seven humanitarian assistance and disaster relief workshops with 390 participants; 14 band concerts with more than 6700 attendees; and a field training exercise.

“Every Pacific Partnership mission has transformed and further strengthened our regional interoperability and disaster response capabilities, increasing stability and security in the region,” said Armed Forces Philippines Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Vicente Bartolome Bacarro in his remarks during the closing ceremony. “Meaningful partnerships and missions such as this present us with a myriad of opportunities to forge new and enduring friendships across the Indo-Pacific region to further our national and regional security objectives.”

In addition, Pacific Partnership included cleft palate and lip repair surgeries on 35 children, health fairs conducted in seven local barangays, exams for more than 3,200 optometry patients, two school renovation projects, and Mercy’s participation in a maritime exercise with the Royal Navy’s HMS Tamar (P233) and the Philippine Coast Guard’s BRP Kalanggaman (FPB-2404).

“The coordination between the Philippine government and community, Armed Forces of the Philippines, and all our partner nations during PP22 contributed to enhanced understanding and cooperation, as well as prepared all involved to respond as partners to any hazard that we may face,” said Capt. Hank Kim, Pacific Partnership mission commander.

This year’s Pacific Partnership mission has so far included stops in Vietnam and Palau, as well as engineering engagements in the Republic of Marshall Islands and Fiji. The hospital ship USNS Mercy serves as the PP22 mission platform.

Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific.

For more information about Pacific Partnership and USNS Mercy, visit www.facebook.com/USNSMERCY, www.facebook.com/pacificpartnership, or https://www.msc.usff.navy.mil/ships/mercy/.

 

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