Scenes from the USNS Comfort visit.

Minister of State with responsibility for Health, the Honourable Senator Wendy Phipps hailed the recent visit by the US Naval Ship Comfort to the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis as a significant event strengthening the country’s longstanding diplomatic relations with the United States.

“It is a gesture that is well-received, a gesture that our people are appreciative of,” she said during the closing ceremony Friday. “It is the first time we would have had such an extensive visit with medical interventions being offered as an effort to extend or to further concretize the bilateral relations that St. Kitts and Nevis continues to enjoy with the United States of America.”

Minister Phipps noted the Federation is grateful to be given the opportunity to build on that strong relationship during the USNS Comfort’s Oct. 5-10 visit.

“I think this demonstration that we have seen — whether it was through dental services, optometry, or the surgical interventions — says a lot, and it tells us that we all need each other, and the support systems and the mechanisms that would be in place to ensure that happening, are the key to making a difference in the lives of people,” Senator Phipps said.

She expressed thanks and appreciation to all those who played a pivotal role in ensuring that the initiative was a resounding success, especially the crew of the USNS Comfort, and by extension, the government of the United States.

The US Naval Ship Comfort is a floating medical treatment facility/hospital. The ship and its staff have been deployed by the government of the United States to offer medical care to the people of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis and ten other Latin American and Caribbean territories.