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By Judith Welles

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At sea

I'm always amazed at what federal employees do. This summer, government doctors, dentists, and even veterinarians are aboard the hospital ship USNS Comfort, a ship operated by the U.S. Navy's Military Sealift Command, on a four-month long humanitarian assistance mission to 12 nations.

The mission has a number of "firsts." Sea captains usually keep a log, but this time it's a Web log. Comfort's mission commander, Navy Capt. Bob Kapcio is reporting regularly on activities on his blog.

In the first at-sea promotion, five U.S. Public Health Service officers were promoted to ranks ranging from lieutenant to captain this month.

To date, Comfort's medical and veterinarian staff has conducted 182 surgeries, 5,717 dental procedures, dispensed 16,999 pharmaceuticals, issued 3,868 eyeglasses and also treated 862 animals. The goal is more than 85,000 patient treatments.

The ship has already completed visits to Belize, Guatemala and Panama and will be sailing to Colombia, Haiti, El Salvador, Ecuador, Guyana, Nicaragua, Peru, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.

All of this is happening in only 120 days. What are you doing this summer?

Posted by Judith Welles on Jul 17, 2007 at 12:13 PM


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