Aboard USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) Apr. 24, 2003 -- Several wards holding recovering patients have been nicknamed "The Village" by crew members because of the community atmosphere aboard USNS Comfort (T-AH 20). Comfort is one of two hospital ships operated by Military Sealift Command and is designed to provide emergency, on-site care for U.S. combatant forces deployed in war or other operations. USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) and Comfort each contain 12 fully-equipped operating rooms, a 1,000 bed hospital facility, digital radiological services, a diagnostic and clinical laboratory, a pharmacy, an optometry lab, a cat scan and two oxygen producing plants. Both hospital ships are converted San Clemente-class super tankers. Comfort set sail for New York City and provided housing, laundry, food, medical and other services to volunteers and rescue personnel for nearly three weeks in the wake of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. Comfort was activated again in December 2002 and sailed to the Arabian Gulf to support Operation Iraqi Freedom, the multi-national coalition effort to liberate the Iraqi people, eliminate Iraqs weapons of mass destruction, and end the regime of Saddam Hussein. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 1st Class Shane T. McCoy.
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