Several COVID-19 patients were mistakenly brought on board the USNS Comfort

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A handful of patients that tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) were transferred from the Javits Center in New York to the Navy hospital ship Comfort "by mistake," Fox News reports

  • Three U.S. officials told Fox News that "less than five" patients tested positive aboard the USNS Comfort, which is meant to treat non-coronavirus patients and free up space in New York hospitals.
  • The patients came with a larger group of people who had been receiving treatment at the makeshift hospital at the Javits Center in Manhattan; they were transferred to the Comfort after President Donald Trump approved a request for the Javits Center to being treating COVID-19 positive patients. 
  • At the time they were transferred, "the initial screening did not indicate they were positive," Fox News reports. That screening included a questionnaire, and having their temperatures taken. 
  • Once on board, they were tested, and put in isolation while they awaited their results. By Saturday, the handful of positive patients had been transferred back to the Javits Center.
  • Air Force Gen. Terrence O'Shaughnessy told Fox News that an additional patient was delivered to the Comfort on Saturday, and later tested positive for coronavirus.
  • "The Comfort has infection control procedures that are followed just like hospitals ashore," Cmdr. Ashley Hockycko, spokeswoman for U.S. Second Fleet, told Fox News. "Our medical experts on board are well prepared for cases like this, and have taken the appropriate precautionary measures."