USNS Comfort Benefits Thousands of Salvadorans

General check-ups, pediatrics, geriatrics, ophthalmology, dentistry, gastroenterology, and orthopedics were the specialties that were performed in the medical clinics in Acajutla and San Julian. 600 people were treated each day for two weeks, benefiting a total of 14,000 Salvadorans.

Although many of the participants of the medical campaigns arrived empty-handed, patients left with medication and the satisfaction of the medical attention of the hospital medical team as well as personnel of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of National Defense.

Other achievements of the humanitarian mission included the 103 operations that were performed on board the Comfort ship during its stay in El Salvador. These surgeries were coordinated with the Dr. Jorge Mazzini Villacorta Hospital of Sonsonante, which pre-screened and evaluated the patients.

“The United States is completely dedicated to working arm in arm to contribute to the achievement of a better life for all Salvadorans,” said U.S. Ambassador Mari Carmen Aponte. She also emphasized that one of the determining elements of the success of the mission was the collaboration of the partner associations, which included NGOs and universities that offered volunteers throughout the fulfillment of the medical brigades.

The ministries involved in the mission alongside the many volunteers and members of the Comfort crew performed reparations to two schools, the Special Education School in Acajutla and of the National Institute in Acajutla. These diverse repairs will improve the quality of education provided to hundreds of students in the region.

The support of the Ministry of National Defense was one of the cornerstones of the mission. Minister David Munguia Payes stated that the results were satisfactory and thanked the United States counterparts for the help they provided to El Salvador.

An element of cultural exchange was also present during the mission and was executed by “Uncharted Waters,” the Navy band that was on tour with the Comfort ship. During its stay of two weeks, the band performed 15 times at various locations throughout the country, winning over the concert audiences wherever they went.

“Continuing Promise” is the second humanitarian act that has been accomplished through the coordination of both countries in 2015. “Beyond the Horizon” was carried out over three months, and concluded earlier this month. In this mission, the United States military and their Salvadoran counterparts collaborated to execute medical clinics as well as construction, reparation, and reconstruction of school and a medical laboratory. More than 20,000 people received medical attention during these medical brigades.

Both missions benefited around 30,000 Salvadorans, bringing medical treatment and improved facilities to various school centers in Sonsonate, El Salvador.