A U.S. Air Force C-130J Super Hercules tactical airlifter delivered an En-Route Patient Staging System (ERPSS) to Italy in response to the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak.
The aircraft, assigned to USAF 86th Airlift Wing at Ramstein Air Base in Germany, transported the ERPSS system to Aviano Air Base for delivery to the Italian Ministry of Defense.
This mobile, or fixed system, provides 10 patient holding/staging beds and can support a maximum throughput of 40 patients in a 24-hour period.
“The COVID-19 pandemic requires that we work with our Allies and partners to meet the challenges together,” said Gen. Jeff Harrigian, U.S Air Forces in Europe (USAFE) commander.
The ERPSS system comes with seven days of medical supplies, operates within two tents and can achieve initial operating capability within one hour of notification. This particular configuration includes a 15-day resupply pallet.
USAFE prepositioned the equipment at Aviano AB as a prudent measure to potentially support higher COVID-19 risk areas.
“This effort demonstrates out mutual support as we team together in response to this public health crisis. We are working closely with our Italian friends, the Department of State, and U.S. European Command to ensure we provide the right equipment in a safe and timely manner,” Harrigian said. “It’s our privilege to support the Italian response, and our continued commitment reflects the values of the American people to provide assistance whenever and wherever it is needed.”