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

Medical lab workers ensure readiness and wellness behind the scenes

Image of woman in lab coat looking at samples in test tubes Senior Airman Brittany Campbell prepares urinalysis samples for testing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. James Hodgman)

Recommended Content:

Public Health | Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask

Medical laboratory professionals usually work behind the scenes, performing vital duties to ensure the health and readiness of the force. But they come front and center this week, as National Medical Laboratory Professionals Week shines a spotlight on their work and this year’s Fellowship of the Lab theme.

Across the Military Health System, medical lab professionals are involved in every aspect of health care. As the MHS devotes resources to support the COVID-19 pandemic response, lab workers are analyzing tests that detect the contagious respiratory virus.

"We're fortunate to be a vital piece to the COVID-19 pandemic response by standing up in-house testing," said Air Force Lt. Michael Moeun, chief of microbiology at David Grant USAF Medical Center laboratory at Travis Air Force Base, California. The David Grant lab supports Air Mobility Command and the Pacific Theater.

"We could not be more proud to support Team Travis and our patients," Moeun said.

Since the first reports of the new virus Dec. 31, approximately 2.5 million cases of COVID-19 have occurred globally, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Department of Defense is working closely with the Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. State Department to provide support in dealing with the outbreak.

MHS laboratory capabilities are synchronized through the Center for Laboratory Medicine Services and the Executive Secretariat, DoD Laboratory Network. Currently, COVID-19 testing is being performed at 68 Army, Navy, and Air Force facilities across the DoD.

As the virus has spread, so have testing capabilities. For example, the Army initially had nine medical centers with a large testing capacity. That's since expanded to 35 installations to provide testing locally, said Army Lt. Gen. Scott Dingle, the Army surgeon general.

Medical lab professionals are also investigating different diagnostic capabilities, Dingle said. And they're working on the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.

COVID-19 testing is just the latest capability of MHS laboratory professionals. At Naval Medical Center San Diego, the laboratory staff of 260 performs and analyzes about 4 million medical tests annually, said Teresita Crisostomo, the lab quality assurance supervisor.

"Working in the lab every day is a surprise and unpredictable," Moeun said. "You never know what you will encounter, or how you can help a patient's treatment."

"We are behind the scenes in a patient’s care, performing hundreds of different tests," added Capt. Crystal Davis, chief of the core laboratory. "We never underestimate how important our role is, and truly believe it's the best job ever."

Added Senior Airman Jadon Smith, a core laboratory technician: "Doctors rely on us for results. We are critical to the care of a patient."

You also may be interested in...

MHS Town Hall, May 12, 2021

Video
5/12/2021
MHS and Military OneSource COVID-19 Townhall, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Wednesday 12 May

Tune in for another MHS and Military OneSource Town Hall with the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research

Recommended Content:

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

Donate Blood: It's Mission Critical

Video
4/21/2021
DHA Seal

The pandemic has affected nearly every part of our lives, including reductions in blood donations. Find a military blood donor center today to donate blood in a safe environment where we take all precautions against COVID-19.

Recommended Content:

Armed Services Blood Program | Coronavirus

Got Your 6: Step Up

Video
3/18/2021
Got Your 6: Step Up

“Got Your 6” is TRICARE’s COVID-19 vaccine video series that delivers important information and updates, three times a month. It includes the latest information about DoD vaccine distribution, the TRICARE health benefit, and vaccine availability for a DoD-affiliated, and TRICARE beneficiary audience.

Recommended Content:

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

TRICARE | COVID-19 Vaccine | Together, We Are Stronger

Video
3/15/2021
DHA Seal

In the past year, we've faced challenges, and we've done it with courage. Now, hope is on the horizon. Get vaccinated, and let's take care of each other. Together, we are stronger: www.tricare.mil/CovidVaccine

Recommended Content:

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

Secretary of Defense Video to the Force on COVID-19 Vaccinations

Video
2/24/2021
Image of soldier looking through COVID vaccine information laid out on a table

The Secretary of Defense addressed the entire workforce to encourage informed decision-making with regards to coronavirus-19 vaccination.

Recommended Content:

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

MHS Minute: A Path Forward in 2021

Video
2/10/2021
DHA Seal

Want to know more about what MHS organizations and partners did in 2020? For a full look at the MHS Minute series, click here: https://shorturl.at/eDL14

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

LTG Place Vaccine Roll-Out Video

Video
1/18/2021
DHA Seal

DHA Director LTG Ron Place talks about coronavirus vaccines, their safety and efficacy, and encourages everyone to do their own research to get vaccinated.

Recommended Content:

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

MHS Minute: December 2020

Video
12/28/2020
DHA Seal

See how MHS is leading a phased approach to offer 11.1 million Department of Defense personnel the first COVID-19 vaccines. To learn more about the safety and efficacy behind COVID-19 vaccines, go to: https://www.health.mil/Military-Health-Topics/Combat-Support/Public-Health/Coronavirus/COVID-19-Vaccine-Efforts.

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Coronavirus

MHS COVID Response

Video
12/21/2020
DHA Seal

The men and women of the Military Health System spent 2020 working to protect beneficiaries' health during the coronavirus pandemic. Here are just a few of our accomplishments.

Recommended Content:

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

Heroes Behind the Mask

Video
12/17/2020
DHA Seal

A tribute to those across the Military Health System who deserve recognition and thanks for their hard work during this pandemic.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask

COVID-19 Response

Video
12/14/2020
DHA Seal

USPHS Lt. Courtney Labitzky, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 29, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin)

Recommended Content:

Heroes Behind the Mask

COVID-19 Response2

Video
11/27/2020
DHA Seal

Army Spc. Sean Colangelo, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 23, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask

COVID-19 Response

Video
11/27/2020
DHA Seal

Army Pfc. David Alvarado, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 24, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin.)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask

MHS Minute: November 2020

Video
11/27/2020
Image of MHS Minute Carousel

During Warrior Care Month, we reflect on the strength and resilience of our nation's wounded, ill, and injured service members, and recognize the caregivers who support their recovery and rehabilitation.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care Toolkit | Heroes Behind the Mask | Warrior Care

How Can Vaccine and Antibody Studies Move So Quickly and Still Be Safe?

Video
11/3/2020
How Can Vaccine and Antibody Studies Move So Quickly and Still Be Safe?

This video provides a detailed overview of the processes that have been implemented to accelerate the pace of the COVID-19 vaccine and antibody studies, and what is being done to assure safety.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine
<< < 1 2 3 > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 3

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.