USS Bataan Receives MEDEVAC, Treats Three Injured Haitians
By SOF Editor on Wed, 01/20/2010 - 11:32am
Amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD-5) received two medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) helicopters at approximately 8:15 p.m. Jan. 19, with three injured Haitians aboard who received immediate medical care from the Bataan medical team.
U.S. Navy and Coast Guard search-and-rescue crews responded to two separate distress calls in the vicinity of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
An MH-60S Knighthawk from Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 22 medically evacuated two patients with potentially life-threatening injuries just before a Coast Guard HH-65A Dolphin carrying a third patient arrived aboard Bataan.
"This is why we train," said Cmdr. Melanie Merrick, senior medical officer aboard Bataan. "We are equipped for these types of injuries to provide resuscitation and stabilization. We will continue to assess the individuals and go from there."
The first two injured were a 24-year-old woman and a infant boy in need of urgent medical care. The third patient is a 70-year-old woman. Merrick said all three patients are stable and receiving medical treatment.
Bataan arrived off the coast of Haiti Jan. 18, and immediately began providing humanitarian assistance and disaster relief in support of Operation Unified Response. The Amphibious Relief Mission, a sea base from which relief operations are staged off the coast of Haiti, includes Bataan, USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), USS Gunston Hall (LSD 44), USS Carter Hall (LSD 50).
Operation Unified Response is part of a larger U.S. response to a request from the government of Haiti for urgent humanitarian aid. U.S. Southern Command is working closely with the Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the international community to aggressively provide life-sustaining services to the people of Haiti. All military efforts are in support of USAID, which is orchestrating U.S. government contributions to the relief mission.