A growing number of crew members aboard the USNS Mercy hospital ship docked in Los Angeles have tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
A total of seven medical treatment facility crew members have now been infected and are currently isolated off the ship, according to U.S. Navy Cmdr. John Face, a 3rd Fleet spokesman. The first positive case was confirmed on April 9.
Face said everyone who was considered to have been in close contact with the infected individuals remain in quarantine off the ship and have tested negative, with the exception of one crew member who was the fifth positive case.
“The ship is following protocols and taking every precaution to ensure the health and safety of all crew members and patients on board,” Face told ABC News in a statement late Monday. “This will not affect the ability for Mercy to receive patients at this time.”
After arriving in the Port of Los Angeles last month, the USNS Mercy began treating non-coronavirus patients from area hospitals to help free up resources for COVID-19 patients.