Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

From the front lines to the home front, Military Medicine is always ready

Army Lt. Gen. Ron Place and two soldiers stand at a table with COVID-19 testing supplies Defense Health Agency director, Army Lt. Gen. Ron Place, visited medical personnel at a COVID-19 screening station outside the Emergency Department at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Tuesday, March 31, 2020. WRNMMC instituted additional safety measures including separate entry points for staff and patients to screen for coronavirus symptoms on March 12, 2020. (MHS photo by Navy Lt. Cmdr. Andrew Benson)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Who would have imagined this? We’ve stopped almost everything else we were doing and turned our energies toward fighting this pandemic. As the specific impacts take shape within the United States, the Military Health System is surging forward, implementing standing plans and showing agility in responding to events that some believed were unthinkable even a few short months ago.

Federal and state officials are requesting military medical forces to assist in stemming the spread of infection both directly and indirectly. Hundreds of thousands of professionals who are supported by the relatively young Defense Health Agency are reinforcing our civilian medical capabilities. Just as we’ve done throughout our history, when the U.S. military is called in times of crisis and natural disaster, we answer.

Military medicine is providing assistance in unprecedented ways. Already, two hospital ships, the USNS Mercy and the USNS Comfort, are positioned in Los Angeles and New York City, respectively, providing much needed additional medical capability to civilian medical facilities overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients. The Army has also established field hospitals in New York and is increasing bed space elsewhere with the phenomenal work of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It’s the right thing to do, right now.

In the best of times, the primary mission of the Military Health System is to maintain a medically ready force and a ready medical force. This means we must ensure American Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen are medically ready to deploy anywhere, anytime to defend the Nation. It also means we must develop and sustain our own medical teams to be trained and ready to support the force. Shifting focus from this primary mission carries risk; however, after two decades of conflict, we are well prepared to both identify risk and develop strategies to mitigate it.

This is not theoretical. We’re taking actions with tangible effects. For instance, we are rapidly shifting as many physicians, nurses, and other medical professionals as we can from administrative duties to direct patient care. We’re plowing new ground by graduating new doctors and nurses months early from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, the military’s medical school, so they can join the fight – now. In our military hospitals and clinics, we’ve limited elective medical and dental procedures, so we can decrease surgical inpatient needs, shift clinical staffing toward COVID response, and conserve medical resources for the COVID fight.

Additionally, we’re identifying patient bed space on military installations and planning how to quickly convert – or return to use – unused space, with all of the needed equipment and supplies. That means, in some cases, converting office space once used as patient rooms when our military was twice the size, back to treatment areas. Fighting this pandemic is all-hands-on-deck. No good idea is off the table.

The reassuring news is that the Military Health System is, in some ways, uniquely suited for this crisis. Just as every Marine is a rifleman, every medical provider in our system is a generalist. While many of our health care providers normally do focus on specific diseases or specialties, they are trained to treat patients across the range of needs wherever they’re called to serve. Agility is part of what we offer our nation every day.

Facing multiple challenges is nothing new for us. Together, across the levels of government, we can do this. At this extraordinary time, we can play a significant part in caring for citizens in need, while still ensuring our military forces are medically ready to defend our Nation. With the support of the 9.5 million beneficiaries who depend on us for their health care, our agile and dedicated Defense health team is surging thousands of service members to the front lines, helping our fellow Americans, and meeting our obligation to the nation’s sons and daughters who have volunteered to defend them.

You also may be interested in...

DOD Announces Use of Masks, Other Public Health Measures

Article
2/9/2021
Woman wearing a mask

Department of Defense updates the use of masks requirements to align to the most current CDC guidelines.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

COVID-19 vaccine rollout ongoing in U.S. Army Central footprint

Article
2/9/2021
Two healthcare workers, wearing masks, adding the COVID-19 vaccine to syringes

The COVID-19 vaccination program in the U.S. Army Central’s area of operations is underway.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

Military, medical leaders discuss COVID-19 issues with Service Members

Article
2/8/2021
Mr. and Mrs. Milley, wearing masks, standing in front of various flags.

Fauci said it is impossible to get COVID-19 from the vaccine, and it will "absolutely not" enter into a person's DNA.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

DOD COVID-19 vaccine roll-out continues, eye on long-term readiness

Article
2/4/2021
Soldier getting a vaccine in his left arm

The impact of the COVID-19 vaccines on military readiness is unknown, but members are encouraged to get the shots as soon as they become available.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

Blood donations remain vital for Service Member care

Article
2/3/2021
Man walking with assistance at a PT clinic

Putting a human face on the act of giving blood could help drive blood donations. And first-tme donors often become sustaining donors.

Recommended Content:

Heart Health Toolkit | Coronavirus | Convalescent Plasma Collection Program

Eliminating the pandemic - one shot at a time

Article
2/3/2021
Tom Danaher was one of approximately several hundred 75 years and older beneficiaries who were administered their initial dose of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

NHB / NMRTC Bremerton moves forward with the phased approach of the COVID-19 vaccines

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

Innovative mobile technologies impact DOD health surveillance

Article
2/2/2021
Medical personnel using a syringe to inject a fluid into a test tube

Early detection of infectious diseases in the field to protect the troops.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Research and Innovation | Technology

COVID-19 presents challenges to heart health, physical fitness

Article
2/1/2021
Four military personnel, wearing masks, running on a track

Because of COVID-19 shutdowns, the overall health of both military personnel and beneficiaries has taken a hit over the last year.

Recommended Content:

Heart Health Toolkit | Heart Health Toolkit | Heart Health Toolkit | Coronavirus | Total Force Fitness | Physical Fitness | Heart Health

DOD experts explain: The science behind the COVID-19 vaccines

Article
2/1/2021
Medical personnel in PPE, conducting lab tests

Six weeks after the first vaccines were approved for emergency use authorization in the U.S., there is much more to know about the vaccine products developed against COVID-19.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

SAMHS starts next phase of vaccine rollout, expands to 75 and older

Article
1/28/2021
Medical personnel giving a vaccine to a soldier in her right arm

Vaccinations for eligible 1b military personnel will be coordinated by their military units.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit | COVID-19 Vaccine for Adults Age 75 and Older

Religious support team deploys to help frontline healthcare workers

Article
1/28/2021
Two military personnel, wearing masks, standing against a wall

Military chaplains and religious affairs specialist deploy to support our military medical providers responding working on the frontlines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Recommended Content:

Spiritual Fitness | Total Force Fitness | Coronavirus

DOD vaccinating personnel worldwide against COVID-19

Article
1/26/2021
Two soldiers, wearing masks: one is getting a vaccine in his left arm

One-month update of COVID-19 distribution and administration efforts to DOD personnel.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

DHA director visits San Antonio military units, JBSA vaccination sites

Article
1/26/2021
Three military personnel, wearing masks, talking with each other in a hospital hallway

Army Lt. Gen Ronald Place, DHA director, recently visited JBSA vaccination sites and several other military locations in the greater San Antonio region.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

MHS Transformation results continue during COVID-19

Article
1/21/2021
Military personnel in a supply room, reaching for the top shelf

The MTF transition has enabled the DHA and the Services to increase standardization, eliminate duplicative contracts, and realize cost efficiencies by beginning the management of an enterprise-wide program.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Military Health System Transformation

DOD recommends adults 75 and older should seek COVID-19 vaccine

Article
1/19/2021
Nursing home members, wearing masks, wait in a line to get their COVID vaccine

This age recommendation differs slightly from that of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which recommends vaccinations for those 65 and older.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine for Adults Age 75 and Older | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit
<< < ... 6 7 8 9 10  ... > >> 
Showing results 76 - 90 Page 6 of 25

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.