PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:

Cathleen D. Bennett

For Further Information Contact:
Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

NJ Nurse Volunteers Deploy to Assist St. Thomas Hospital

A team of about 10 New Jersey volunteer nurses deployed to the U.S. Virgin Islands this morning to support Schneider Regional Medical Center on St. Thomas where medical services are still scarce as a result of Hurricanes Irma and Maria that tore through the community last month.
The New Jersey Department of Health partnered with the New Jersey Hospital Association (NJHA) to recruit volunteer nurses for two, 15-day missions. The first deployment of nurses from Hackettstown Medical Center, St. Francis Medical Center, Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center (Camden), Bayshore Community Hospital, and St. Peters University Hospital departed today. Two nurses from University Hospital will be leading the team, and all volunteers will be under the umbrella of the state’s Medical Reserve Corps.
“I am inspired over and over again by the compassion and selflessness of these dedicated healthcare professionals,” said Betsy Ryan, NJHA President and CEO. “I had the privilege of spending time with a contingent of volunteer nurses that had traveled to Houston during the massive flooding there and was so impressed by their commitment to helping those in need. Once again, our nurses are making New Jersey proud, and I thank them for their service.”
This deployment builds on New Jersey’s commitment to assist and share resources with U.S. territories in response to natural disasters. After deploying last month to the U.S. Virgin Islands to provide emergency medical services to areas hardest hit by recent hurricanes, about 30 members of New Jersey’s EMS Task Force returned home the weekend of Oct. 21. The response missions included nearly 200 emergency calls for assistance on St. Thomas and St. John, ranging from cardiac care and motor vehicle accidents to cuts, broken bones, and more. Crews were supported by 25 New Jersey State Police troopers, while four Disaster Response Crisis Counselors worked with first responders, schools, and faith-based groups to provide emotional support and psycho-educational presentations. More than 200 individual crisis counseling contacts were made as well as several presentations, reaching more than 1,250 community members. Teams also participated in humanitarian aid missions and provided logistical support.
Using all-terrain ambulances, logistics equipment, portable care tents, and emergency response vehicles to operate on the island, crews made it possible for local first responders to rest and return to their families, many of whom are still dealing with the devastation left behind.
Follow the New Jersey Department of Health on Twitter @njdeptofhealth, Facebook /njdeptofhealth, Instagram @njdeptofhealth and Snapchat @njdoh. 
Last Reviewed: 11/1/2017