US Military Steps Up To Provide Aid For Overwhelmed Hospitals

US marine in the MARPAT uniform and protective military eyewear

( – The nation faces unprecedented challenges in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Of particular concern is the recent emergence of newer and stronger strains of the coronavirus. The strain was first detected overseas and is rapidly spreading throughout the United States.

Confirmation of the new strain in Los Angeles is particularly alarming as it was one of the cities hit the hardest by the pandemic. The situation there is so dire that active-duty military medical personnel were deployed to White Memorial Hospital, one of L.A.’s hardest-hit medical facilities.

CBS News correspondent David Begnaud spoke with 1st Lt. Dana Bagwell, one of about 20 medical personnel sent to the hospital by Defense Department officials to help combat an invisible enemy — COVID-19. A registered nurse, Bagwell, told him she was amazed by the strength displayed by nurses and other healthcare professionals on a day-to-day basis.

ICU manager Wesley Willard told CBS News it normally takes a new staff member about four weeks to get oriented to the hospital’s routine. However, Bagwell and other military personnel hit the ground running on day one.

America owes a debt of gratitude to the many healthcare workers doing their best to save lives in the midst of the nation’s worst medical crisis in a century.

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