DVIDS – News – Working Across Departments Coast to Coast


The medical departments of the service branches are grouped under the Defense Health Agency. However, joint operations have been going on for some time. Madigan Army Medical Center’s recent on-site support for the 116th Medical Group training tour from Robbins Air Force Base in Georgia is one example.

In September, a total of 18 Reservists, or about 20 percent of the unit, traveled to Madigan to participate in this training in different sections and specialties.

Madigan’s Logistics Division learned that she had been selected to support Reservists in their training in medical supply management and clinical engineering.

“We did this MSR, which is medical skills preparation training. We do that with our sister units there at the 62nd Medical Brigade. We’ve been doing this for over two years, from what I understand, this is the first time we’ve done it with the Air Force, ”said Sgt. 1st Class Jojo Ada, the NCO in charge of logistics.

This training support has been a fairly constant rotation where two to six soldiers each quarter spend 60 to 90 days learning how to support a large medical facility and gaining day-to-day experience.

Since Reserve units and the 62nd do not have a facility to support, they do not have the same opportunity to familiarize themselves with logistical support as those who operate daily in Madigan.

In the planning phase of this training, Ada and John Donaho, the logistics manager, expected the experience to be worth it.

“They will learn all the ins and outs of running a warehouse and supporting a hospital,” said Ada. “Wherever they go, they must be prepared to provide logistical support. “

In a deployed situation, service members may find themselves working alongside members of any branch. Spending time training together puts them on the same page before this situation happens. Supporting all forms of training is an old hat for Madigan.

“My philosophy was that Madigan is a training hospital, so we should also be training in logistics,” Donaho added. “By coming here, then they can see how supply chain management actually works.”

Staff Sgt. Sandra Byrd is not assigned a role in logistics, she is in the administration of health services. But, the aviator she supervises, Staff Sgt. Molly Schaff, is a logistics technician.

Byrd has come to increase his understanding of his subordinate’s work.

“She’s the one who really benefits from the training, which has been phenomenal,” Byrd said. “We’ve learned so much, even though it’s not my AFSC (Air Force Specialty Code), I’ve learned a lot since observing the Madigan team and their logistics section, and I have to say I enjoyed the training because we couldn’t have gotten this at our home station.

In the warehouse, Byrd was an obvious asset, as was Schaff. Both have been advised that they may be retained on the Madigan staff due to their skills. While claiming that staff from another unit were jokingly said their help was appreciated.

The benefits of this training are mutual. Many sections are understaffed, making extra hands useful. The Logistics section sees this as a win-win. Other sectors are just as happy to teach and mentor while benefiting from the presence of professional reservists among them.

Byrd wasn’t the only aviator keen to jump in and develop practical skills. Reservists are recruited for an active duty deployment in the hope that they will be proficient from day one. But, they have much less time to develop this skill than those who perform these tasks on a daily basis.

“We do two weeks of training to get our category one and category two training completed for readiness because we don’t do it every day; we come here, we get it and then we are more ready to deploy, ”said the chief master sergeant. Frank Bulin, the enlisted leader of the medical group leading the 116th contingent.

The crash course these Airmen receive on the ground at Madigan is not about introducing skills, but deepening. Watching them work, it is obvious that they are talented professionals. In a large facility like Madigan, they have the opportunity to have interactions that are different from their daily encounters in their civilian life.

“My civilian job – I’m doing cancer medicine, cancer surgery. So obviously that provides me with a bit more training and experience, because we’re definitely responsible for deploying as a downstream PA. , we are being asked to know all types of medicine – emergency care, types of emergency medicine – and not cancer medicine, that will not be my downline task, ”noted Major Colby Suttles, medical assistant in the emergency room. “We use these kinds of opportunities to gain practical experience in order to maintain our skills so that, when we are tasked with performing an active duty assignment, we have a general and extensive knowledge of medicine. , not just what we do on the civilian side.

Suttles and Major Rolando de Luna, also an emergency room medical assistant, both underscored their appreciation for the ability to spend time in a military medical setting to absorb the special aspects of working in a military installation versus a civilian installation.

It is particularly interesting that de Luna was fortunate enough to work with MHS GENESIS, the DoD’s new electronic health record.

“It will be the future and it has definitely helped me to see it in action,” said de Luna.

Helped by a few rather slow days in the emergency room, Staff Sgt. Charles Kinney, a medical technician who is akin to a licensed practical nurse, appreciated the time spent with providers.

It was “a little easier to have more one-on-one time with suppliers to help us show us more detailed things. Yesterday we had an ultrasound doctor here who was very knowledgeable and showed us every imaginable way to visualize a heart through an ultrasound, ”he said.

Technical sergeant. Jessica Jimenez, also a medical technician, agreed with the sentiments and a to-do list offered by Kinney.

When asked what she enjoyed about her time in the Madigan ER, Jimenez replied, “To hone your skills, as well as help with ECGs, drawing labs, etc.”

One aspect Kinney noted is beneficial to see in Madigan that is lacking in his regular Reserve duties is working with a diverse patient population. Madigan has a large retiree population, offering the military the opportunity to develop skills with older bodies than typical military personnel. This informs a caregiver of how the body changes as it ages.

As military medicine is placed under the aegis of DHA, members of the different branches should work and train more together. Madigan and the 116th Medical Group develop a relationship for excellent collaboration.

Date taken: 05/01/2022
Date posted: 05/01/2022 20:39
Story ID: 412514
Site: TACOMA, WA, United States

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