Brazilian Military Doctors Visit American Hospital Ship
By Dialogo February 10, 2010
Military doctors and the Brazilian Air Force General Coordinator of Health in
Haiti, Brigadier José Maria Lins Calheiros, visited the USNS Comfort – Medical
Treatment Facility, a U.S. Navy hospital ship.
“Their triage sessions have the structure of those in a big hospital in
Brazil. Very impressive,” commented the Field Hospital’s orthopedist, Captain
The main mission of the USNS Comfort is to fulfill one of the fundamental
principles of the Vienna Convention, to improve the situation of the wounded, sick,
and shipwrecked of the Armed Forces at sea.
The ship’s second mission, put into practice in Haiti, is to support
humanitarian-aid and governmental actions. With the capacity to care for 300 to 400
patients per day, the ship has a thousand beds, including 80 intensive-care unit
(ICU) beds and 12 operating rooms.
During the days following the January 12 earthquake, a helicopter carrying
injured victims landed every ten minutes on the deck of the ship, a landing and
takeoff area for helicopters, according to the commander of the ship’s medical team,