A female sailor gave birth to a child Sunday while serving on board the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower in the Persian Gulf, interrupting her participation in the fight against the Islamic State.
What happened is that the sailor reportedly had no idea she was pregnant, Navy Times reports.
She reported to the ship’s medical facility with complaints of abdominal pain and soon delivered a seven-pound girl, after which point she was airlifted to a hospital in Bahrain.
“As the baby was born at sea aboard an operational unit, the main focus for the U.S. Navy, the ship and its crew is the safety and well-being of the baby and the mother. The baby and mother have arrived in Bahrain via helicopter with medical escort and are on the way to a local hospital,” Cmdr. Bill Urban, spokesman for U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, told The Virginian-Pilot.
The female sailor’s superiors had no idea she was pregnant, and neither did she, apparently. Normally, females are supposed to report they’re pregnant once their pregnancy a medical doctor confirms the pregnancy.
Since pregnancy reduces combat readiness, female sailors are only allowed on ships up to 20 weeks of pregnancy and if it’s possible for the sailor to be transported to a proper medical facility within six hours. It’s unclear how many pregnant sailors need to be airlifted off ships every year.
“While it would have been preferred to send her to her homeport earlier, per policy, we are now focused on caring for the health and welfare of our Sailor and the newest member of our Navy family. We are working a plan to move them to a shore-based hospital as soon as possible,” Urban added.
The sailor’s name has not been released.
The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower, left port on June 1 and has since been stationed in the Persian Gulf for the purpose of launching strikes against ISIS.
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