Pacific Partnership strengthens regional ties with floating hospital

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The USNS Mercy and USNS Brunswick were on Guam two weeks ago preparing for their deployment as part of the 2018 Pacific Partnership mission.

This annual maritime operation helps to improve disaster response preparedness in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. In fact, it is the largest annual multilateral disaster response preparedness mission in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. The operation is made up of more than 800 military and civilian personnel from the U.S., Canada., U.K., Australia, France, Peru and Japan. The two ships have medical dental civil-engineering and veterinary teams that will conduct civic-action projects, community health exchanges, medical symposiums, and disaster response training activities in various host nations.

The USNS Mercy will go to Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Vietnam while the USNS Brunswick will go to Yap, Palau, Malaysia and Thailand.

“The purpose of all of these things is to deepen relationships and with respect to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief is to prepare in calm so we are able to execute in crisis,” said Squadron 31 Commander Capt. David Bretz.

The Pacific Partnership began in 2004 as a humanitarian relief mission that responded to a tsunami that devastated parts of South and Southeast Asia.