Back to Top Skip to main content

Medical Airmen train in Puerto Rico during Vigilant Guard

Airmen and Soldiers from the 3rd Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Task Force, Pennsylvania National Guard, evacuate a casualty actor during the exercise Vigilant Guard, at Camp Santiago in Salinas, Puerto Rico. Members of the Pennsylvania and Puerto Rico National Guard worked together to provide joint disaster relief training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Tony Harp) Airmen and Soldiers from the 3rd Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Task Force, Pennsylvania National Guard, evacuate a casualty actor during the exercise Vigilant Guard, at Camp Santiago in Salinas, Puerto Rico. Members of the Pennsylvania and Puerto Rico National Guard worked together to provide joint disaster relief training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Tony Harp)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

CAMP SANTIAGO SALINAS, Puerto Rico — Recently, medical Airmen from the Pennsylvania Air National Guard participated in the disaster relief exercise Vigilant Guard here.

Vigilant Guard is a U.S. Northern Command and National Guard Bureau sponsored event. This year it was held in multiple locations across Puerto Rico.

The medical Airmen were attached to the 3rd Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear Task Force out of Fort Indiantown Gap. The majority of Airmen participating in the event are assigned to the 193rd Special Operations Medical Group Detachment 1, which provides medical support to the 3rd CRBN Task Force.

The vision of the exercise was to deploy an external team to Puerto Rico to provide personnel support to fall onto their equipment said Air Force Maj. Nathan Snee, a medical operations and planning officer with the 193rd SOMDG Det 1. “Basically there was a hurricane that came through, caused mass devastation, destruction within the scenario. Our team was to come in and conduct a relief in place to provide them personnel support for continuity of operations.” 

During the first day, the 3rd CBRN TF utilized their Puerto Rican counterparts’ equipment and completed disaster relief efforts. The second day saw most of the 3rd CBRN TF members being integrated with the Puerto Rico teams and providing the same operations as the previous day. The remainder of the 3rd CBRN TF members completed wide-area search training scenarios.

“We expected to flawlessly integrate with Puerto Rico and provide the support they requested,” said Snee. “We expected them to fall onto their equipment and execute operations just like it’s our own, and that’s what they did.”

Air Force Maj. Diana Peña, the CRBN Enhanced Response Force Package medical planner officer with the Puerto Rico ANG, discussed the importance of working together with the Pennsylvania Airmen. 

“It is always a great opportunity to work together with other groups because we obtain the chance to interchange knowledge on how others performs the same tasks we perform,” said Peña. “This gives us a new perspective of how we can adjust our work. In a real-world scenario, we will be working together with others so this definitely gives us the opportunity to interact together.”

“Our primary focus was collapsed structure, so simulating a building collapse, which involves breaking, breaching and entering into a rubble pile to secure any victims or casualties of the destruction,” said Snee. “The second course of action was for wide-area search. That pretty much covered a great amount of distance on the ground. It didn’t involve much of any breaking or breaching, just going from building to building marking and finding casualties.” 

“The medical element primary focus is force health protection, and to save lives and mitigate suffering of civilians and military members alike,” said Snee. “We provide in-field emergency care and stabilization of casualties for immediate evacuation.” 

“Medical Airmen are integrated throughout the 3rd CBRN TF. Search and extraction medics move up and integrate with the Army National Guard S&E personnel to do the breaking and breaching and the wide-area search,” said Snee. There are also Airmen who set up at casualty collection points to evaluate incoming victims and casualties, and assign priority through the use of triage cards. 

“Inside the footprint, there are four medical tents set up. Two are butted together to serve as a field medical hospital which provides in-the-field stabilization, bandaging and patient tracking,” said Snee. Another tent is used for the medical monitoring of Airmen, Soldiers and other workers involved with the operations. This is to ensure that when workers come off the line, they are fit to return to duty. The last tent is the log-out tent, designed to treat minor injuries and prepare for evacuation.

Medics from the 193rd SOMDG and a physician from the 111th Attack Wing supplemented the Det 1 team. The 171st Air Refueling Wing also supplied Airmen for the Fatality Search and Recovery Team that was involved in the exercise.

“We were able to work through any equipment issues or any kind of hand off of equipment that might have been a limiting factor going into it,” said Snee. “They [Puerto Rico] had liaisons, so people assisting us through the whole entire setup truly helped us out. I think ultimately overall, it was a successful event. It shows our capability can be brought across borders.

Disclaimer: Re-published content may have been edited for length and clarity. Read original post.

You also may be interested in...

NH Guantanamo Bay Lt. named as Subspecialty Officer of the Year

Article
1/14/2021
Navy Lt. Ara Gutierrez, Naval Readiness and Training Command Guantanamo Bay, was selected Navy Medicine’s Medical Technology Subspecialty Junior Officer of the Year for 2020.

Gutierrez said she was genuinely surprised and honored to represent medicine’s "hidden profession.”

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

MHS refractive surgery experts discuss warfighter readiness

Article
1/13/2021
Image of Mr. McCaffery looking at a monitor with an eye on it

Refractive surgery is any surgery that eliminates the need for glasses or contact lenses.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

DOD Launches “My MilLife Guide” Text Message Program to Boost Wellness

Article
1/11/2021
The new My MilLife Guide program supports the wellness of the military community.

DoD has launched My MilLife Guide, a new program that sends text messages designed to help the military community boost overall wellness while navigating stresses related to COVID-19.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Public Health | Operation Live Well | Health Readiness

Health literacy focuses on empowering patients to engage in their care

Article
12/30/2020
Medical personnel, wearing a mask, inserting an IV into a patient

How patient-doctor communication improves the health care experience.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Health Literacy Month 2020

AFHSD’s GEIS collect data worldwide to support force protection

Article
12/22/2020
Medical personnel scanning forehead of soldier with thermometer

AFHSD/GEIS continue work with partners across the globe in their efforts to combat COVID-19 and protect military readiness.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health | Coronavirus | Biological Surveillance Tools | Global Health Engagement | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Fort Irwin & TDP collaborate to improve dental care for families

Article
12/16/2020
Image of a bus with the words "Military Dental Services" on the side

The need for family dentistry at Fort Irwin was the result of losing their network civilian dentist on base last spring.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Health Readiness

Deputy defense secretary stresses team approach in battling COVID

Article
12/10/2020
Soldier wearing mask, standing at computer monitors in an office building

The Military Health System has played an important role implementing the National Defense Strategy, Norquist said.

Recommended Content:

MHS Transformation | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Health Readiness

USAMRIID scientist recognized by French for distinguished service

Article
12/4/2020
Two military officers on stage; one handing the other a certificate

Kugelman...identified genetic markers of persistence of the Chikungunya virus.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Research and Innovation | Technology

DGMC medical study looks at plant-based diet

Article
12/3/2020
Man wearing mask and gloves putting container of salad into salad bar

Researchers measured important cholesterol, weight and blood pressure markers at baseline and at 4-weeks.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Health Readiness

New report finds military hearing health is improving

Article
12/3/2020
Military doctor inspecting patient's ear

Noise-induced hearing loss is decreasing for active-duty service members.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Health Readiness | Hearing Loss | Hearing Center of Excellence Research Coordination Directorate | Hearing Center of Excellence

Seven MTFs recognized by ACS for surgical care

Article
12/3/2020
Military surgeons in an operating room

The MHS hospitals were among 89 recognized facilities and 607 total military and civilian hospitals participating in the program.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Health Readiness

Navy Corpsman helps maintain USS Albany readiness

Article
12/2/2020
Soldier wearing a stethoscope on a submarine

Navy Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Matthew Carter is currently serving aboard Albany as an IDC.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

METC improves surgical tech training with new laparoscopy standard

Article
12/1/2020
Surgical team in operating room

A laparoscopy is a low-risk, non-invasive surgical procedure used to examine organs inside the abdomen and repair or remove tissue.

Recommended Content:

Combat Support | Health Readiness | Research and Innovation | Technology

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 12 - December 2020

Report
12/1/2020

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Cases of coronavirus disease 2019 and comorbidities among Military Health System beneficiaries, 1 January 2020 through 30 September 2020; Characteristics of U.S. Army beneficiary cases of COVID-19 in Europe, 12 March 2020–17 April 2020; Air evacuation of service members for COVID-19 in U.S. Central Command and U.S. European Command from 11 March 2020 through 30 September 2020; SARS-CoV-2 and influenza coinfection in a deployed military setting— Two case reports.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

BAMC recognized by American College of Surgeons for outstanding care

Article
11/27/2020
Medical team, wearing masks, rushing a patient in a hospital bed down the hallway

“BAMC provides more complex care to the nation than any other military treatment facility..."

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Combat Support
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 37

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.