While in the city from August 17 to 28, U.S. naval doctors and their Vietnamese counterparts will work together to conduct expert exchanges on various medical and disaster relief topics, dental care and engineering civil action programs.

Royal Australian Navy Commander Ken Walters said on board one of the ships that the exchanges will be related to disaster medicine and preparedness, along with other relevant subjects to provide the Vietnamese community with the wherewithal to sustain themselves in the event of a catastrophe, according to the Vietnam News Agency.

The Commanding Officer of the Medical Treatment Facility on board the USNS Mercy, Captain Melanie Merrick, said the ship’s mission in Vietnam will focus on sharing ideas and furthering an understanding of the response capabilities in the host nation should a disaster strike happen, the news agency said.

Crew members from both ships will also have opportunities to volunteer at community outreach events.

The guests will join their hosts from the Vietnam People’s Navy at 20 seminars to be held in Da Nang on various fields including health in disaster medicine, medicine in common diseases, orthopedic surgical techniques and health care for soldiers.

Many drills on heath relief at sea and on islands will be conducted during the stay of the ships.

In addition, a free medical examination and treatment program intended for local people is one of the top activities of the huge mobile hospital.

Surgeries on burn patients, cardiovascular interventions and operations for entire joint replacement will be among the free medical services USNS Mercy doctors will provide to locals.

The hospital ship has 1,000 beds and 12 operating rooms that are equipped with advanced equipment capable of performing general surgeries, orthopedic operations and ribcage, mental, urologic, dental and gynecological and obstetric surgeries.

This hospital at sea has a workforce of thousands of officers and doctors from the U.S., Australia and New Zealand.

The USNS Mercy is one of two hospital ships of the U.S. Navy, and both ships are maintained by the Military Sealift Command and are part of the Naval Fleet Auxiliary Force, according to the U.S. Navy’s website.

The vessel, which was launched on July 20, 1985 and commissioned on November 8, 1986, is 272.6 meters long and 32.3 meters wide and has a full displacement of 69,350 tons.

The ship can run at 17.5 nautical miles per hour and has a helipad suitable for all helicopters.

Meanwhile, the USNS Millinocket is the third Spearhead-class joint high-speed vessel, which was launched on June 5, 2013 and commissioned on March 25, 2014.

The ship is 105 meters long and 28.5 meters wide and has a full displacement of 2,362 tons.

As an escort and landing craft, the vessel can run at 43 nautical miles per hour, is equipped with two helicopters, and has a crew of 350.

Tuoi Tre News - August 18, 2015