YOKOSUKA, Japan - Vice Adm. Bill Merz, Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet receives the COVID-19 vaccine at U.S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka. Medical personnel and strategic forces were the first to receive the COVID-19 vaccine over the past week at Naval Hospital Yokosuka. This is part of the DoD’s phased vaccine rollout for voluntary inoculations across the force, including the 7th Fleet’s Forward Deployed Naval Forces. As the U.S. Navy's largest forward deployed fleet, with its approximate 50-70 ships and submarines, 140 aircraft, and 20,000 Sailors in the area of operations at any given time, 7th Fleet conducts forward-deployed naval operations in support of U.S. national interests throughout a free and open Indo-Pacific area of operations to foster maritime security, promote stability, and prevent conflict alongside 35 other maritime nations and partners.