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

Defending the Homeland: BAMC infectious disease doc aids Guam's COVID response

Image of soldier standing, surrounded by tropical water Army Maj. (Dr.) Gadiel Alvarado, infectious diseases physician, poses for a photo in Guam with the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in the background April 18, 2020. Alvarado served as the infectious disease expert for the COVID-19 Public Health Task Force from April 12-22. The team, consisting of five Army officers, was there to perform a comprehensive and multidisciplinary review of processes, asses the current situation and help with mitigation plans surrounding the TR COVID-19 outbreak. (courtesy photo)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Global Health Engagement | Heroes Behind the Mask

An Infectious Diseases physician from Brooke Army Medical Center recently deployed to Guam in support of the USS Theodore Roosevelt COVID-19 response.

Army Maj. (Dr.) Gadiel Alvarado served as the infectious disease expert for the COVID-19 Public Health Task Force from April 12-22. The team, consisting of five Army officers, was there to perform a comprehensive and multidisciplinary review of processes, asses the current situation and help with mitigation plans surrounding the TR COVID-19 outbreak.

The ship arrived in Guam March 27 for a scheduled port visit. Prior to its arrival three Sailors tested positive for COVID-19. The Navy has since undertaken an aggressive mitigation plan of isolating, quarantining, and treating affected Sailors to keep the ship prepared to execute its mission.

“This population of personnel in close quartered and close proximity living on the USS Theodore Roosevelt represented an increased risk population with high likelihood for COVID-19 infection transmission,” explained Alvarado.

The 10-day mission consisted of doing face-to-face interviews, data gathering, on-site evaluations, discussions and recommendations to the Joint Regions Marinas leadership working closely with Rear Adm. John Menoni, Joint Regions Marinas commander and personnel from the USS Theodore Roosevelt, Navy Base Guam, U.S. Naval Hospital Guam to prevent further transmission of the virus.

“The proper public health decision making and management of personnel was critical to preventing death and disease burden from COVID-19 affecting the Sailor population and Guam civilian population,” Alvarado said.

Alvarado, a native of Puerto Rico, who completed his Infectious Diseases fellowship at BAMC, relied on his previous training and lessons learned during BAMC’s initial preparation and response to COVID-19.

“I was heavily involved with the risk identification and testing procedure planning,” he said. “One of my main roles was helping with the tent screening process and I was also on the inpatient call team for COVID patients. I had already gone through the motions at BAMC, because we had community spread here (San Antonio).”

Alvarado credits his training, BAMC leadership and being part of COVID planning efforts early on for his success in this mission.

“It was a very efficient and elaborate operation,” Alvarado said. “We were a very cohesive team. We all had our own specific skills and we were able to get the job done. It was amazing.”

Army Col. Samuel Jang, Guam Public Health team lead, praised Alvarado for his efforts.

“Major Alvarado shared many nuances and in-depth insights into COVID-19 disease epidemiology and disease transmission,” Jang said. “His clinical insights were translated into strategic public health planning and operational decision making. He is a highly competent physician and leader.”

Army Lt. Col. Ronal Cole, public health nurse and task force member, agrees.

“His professionalism is to be commended and emulated,” Cole said. “His ability to function in a diverse team made our long days of interviews, data gathering, evaluations and discussions stress-free. He is to be commended for his contributions in saving the lives of approximately 160,000 civilians and 20,000 military personnel during this time of worldwide distress.”

Although the praise of his fellow Public Health Task Force teammates means a great deal to Alvarado, the support from his wife, Maureen and 8-year-old son Aidan was invaluable.

“My wife was very supportive of this mission, but my son was very sad that I was going,” Alvarado said. “But he looked at me and said ‘daddy I’m very glad they picked you.’ When I asked him why, he said ‘because I know you can help them.’”

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

You also may be interested in...

The COVID-19 Pandemic: How Health Care Workers are Coping

Article
9/13/2021
a nurse helping a COVID-19 patient

For health care providers, experiencing the pandemic inside a hospital has brought

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Military Health Podcasts

Increased COVID Restrictions on the Pentagon Reservation

Article
9/8/2021
Military personnel wearing a face mask

Due to the increase in COVID-19 cases and positive test cases in the National Capital Region, the Pentagon Reservation will move to Health Protection Condition Bravo Plus (Bravo+)

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit | Coronavirus

Digital health innovation emerges during COVID-19 pandemic

Article
8/31/2021
The Defense Health Agency’s Connected Health Branch was there to support, advise and deliver new health innovations throughout the pandemic. (Graphic courtesy of DHA Connected Health)

The DHA's Connected Health Branch was there to support, advise, and deliver new health innovations throughout the pandemic.

Recommended Content:

Connected Health | Coronavirus

As Fitness Tests Resume, Troops Seek Post-COVID Exercise Routines

Article
8/31/2021
Military personnel physically training

Keeping fit during pandemic proves hard for some.

Recommended Content:

Total Body Preventive Health and Total Force Fitness | Total Force Fitness | Physical Fitness | Coronavirus

Secretary of Defense Mandates COVID-19 Vaccinations for Service Members

Article
8/26/2021
An Army medic administers the COVID-19 vaccine to another soldier.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III yesterday issued a memorandum directing mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for service members.

Recommended Content:

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

DOD Intends to Mandate Pfizer Vaccine, Pentagon Official Says

Article
8/25/2021
Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby holds a press briefing, at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.

Kirby said the health of DOD's military and civilian employees, families and communities is a top priority.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Maintaining Mission Readiness During a Pandemic

Article
8/24/2021
Gen. Place presents at HIMSS in Las Vegas.

DHA Director Army Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Ronald Place discussed the national security implications of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Heroes Behind the Mask | Deployment Health

Reform, COVID-19 Have Been Catalysts for Change in Military Medicine

Article
8/16/2021
Dr. Terry Adirim speaking to an audience at a conference

Healthcare is about taking care of people, so no amount of change or innovation is ever sufficient if modernization does not lead to helping patients, says acting ASDHA at HIMSS21 in Las Vegas.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit | Military Health System Transformation

Don't Hesitate: Vaccinate Today for School

Article
8/13/2021
A boy gets the COVID-19 vaccine

Back to School Means Vaccine Time

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Coronavirus | Immunization Healthcare | Vaccine-Preventable Diseases | Vaccine Recommendations | Children's Health | Immunizations | TRICARE Health Program

Services Will Make Call on Religious Exemptions to COVID-19 Vaccines

Article
8/13/2021
Two medical people prepare syringes with doses of the COVID-19 vaccine

"There is a religious exemption possibility for any mandatory vaccine, and there's a process that we go through to counsel the individual both from a medical and from a command perspective about using a religious exemption," Kirby said.

Recommended Content:

Public Health | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Austin Seeks Presidential Approval for Mandatory Troop Vaccinations by Mid-September

Article
8/10/2021
Sailors receive COVID-19 vaccinations

The COVID-19 vaccine will be mandatory for service members by mid-September, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III said in a message to the force released yesterday.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Top Military Medical Doctor Predicts Coronavirus Longevity

Article
8/9/2021
Army Lt. Gen. Ronald J. Place, director of Defense Health Agency, delivers remarks at a media briefing on COVID-19 at the Pentagon, April 21, 2021

I believe we will get to a place where we're not talking about COVID all the time

Recommended Content:

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

Senior Medical Leaders Discuss COVID-19 Response

Article
8/6/2021
Army Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Ronald J. Place, director of the Defense Health Agency making remarks

The keys to tackling the emerging COVID-19 pandemic were to quickly develop a comprehensive understanding of the virus, and then put a plan in place to fight it, says DHA Director.

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit | Coronavirus

Debunking Anti-Vaccine Myths with Scientific Facts

Article
8/5/2021
A soldier gets a shot in the arm.

Get the facts: Myths on why not to get COVID-19 vaccination debunked by science

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

COVID-19 Vaccines: Benefits Still Outweigh the Risks

Article
7/30/2021
Military personnel getting vaccinated

Breakthrough COVID-19 Infections are extremely rare, DHA’s Place says

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 27

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.