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

AFHSD’s GEIS collect data worldwide to support force protection

Image of Medical personnel scanning forehead of soldier with thermometer. Kuhina Talimalie, 735th Air Mobility Squadron, uses a no-touch thermometer on a U.S. Air Force airman to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 among service members and the public. (Photo by Air Force Tech Sgt. Anthony Nelson Jr.)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health | Coronavirus | Environmental Exposures | Global Health Engagement | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Throughout 2020, the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division and its Global Emerging Infections Surveillance branch continued to work with partners across the globe in their efforts to combat COVID-19 and protect military readiness. That work goes on even as vaccines for the disease have begun to be administered.

“We continue to fund worldwide respiratory pathogen surveillance studies and COVID-19-specific projects to understand the burden of disease and collect strains from infected cases across the globe,” said Navy Capt. Guillermo Pimentel, Global Emerging Infections Surveillance (GEIS) branch chief. These studies “allow the DOD to conduct advanced characterization of this novel coronavirus and support public health authorities of partner host nations.”

These efforts have allowed the Department of Defense to collect “critical information” for force health protection, and have allowed GEIS surveillance projects to reach approximately 80 countries, with its “principal strength being these partnerships with allies and demonstration of a field presence in key geographic locations of military relevance,” Pimentel added.

The data collected from surveillance studies are being used to “initiate, as well as to further adjust or modify, regional infectious disease protection guidance to maintain our forces ready to carry out their mission in each respective combatant command’s area of responsibility,” the GEIS chief said.

GEIS is also funding respiratory pathogen surveillance projects that provide data related to the burden of respiratory diseases to U.S and host nation militaries.

GEIS continues to fund COVID-19 genomic sequencing efforts from DOD service members and foreign nationals, Pimentel said. These sequencing efforts are at DOD labs in Cambodia, Thailand, Peru, and Kenya. By going outside the continental U.S., GEIS is better able to track the spread and impact in support of the combatant commands.

GEIS partners have sequenced more than 350 novel coronavirus isolates and have provided sequencing support to “multiple outbreaks in the Navy and Army,” he noted.

The Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division and its branches also continue to monitor influenza and other major health events and outbreaks that are of military relevance. In connection with academic partners and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, the Integrated Biosurveillance Branch has a near real-time mapping application called the Health Surveillance Explorer that can be used to better respond to seasonal or pandemic influenza viruses, “estimate their impact on the readiness of the force, plan personnel requirements and implement interventions,” said IBB Chief Juan Ubiera.

GEIS’s military partners in its sequencing and tracking efforts are the Army (Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases), Navy (Navy Medical Research Center, Naval Health Research Center) and Air Force (U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine).

One partner from USAFSAM, Dr. Anthony Fries, a bioinformaticist from the Air Force Research Laboratory’s 711th Human Performance Wing at Wright-Patterson, Ohio, said the AFRL continues to increase the sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 viruses “to assess what viral diversity is circulating in our service members.” Fries noted his lab has sequenced more than 800 patients with COVID-19.

“While the impact and optimism surrounding vaccines cannot be overstated…we are positioning our sequencing activities to see how this virus responds to a population that will soon have robust protection to it from these new vaccines,” Fries said. “From an evolutionary perspective, we’re hoping that this virus’s limited ability to diversify itself could restrict its ability to avoid our efforts to stop it with the new vaccines.”

Air Force Maj. (Dr.) Jameson Voss, chief, Air Force Medical Service Precision Medicine, Air Force Medical Readiness Agency, added: “We need to understand the genetic changes in the virus to ensure diagnostic, vaccine, and other countermeasures are still working.”

You also may be interested in...

Screensaver: You Might be at Increased Risk

Infographic
3/16/2021
Screensaver: You Might be at Increased Risk

A screensaver graphic listing conditions that might put beneficiaries 16-64 in the “at-risk” category. This includes asthma cystic fibrosis, hypertension, and more. Graphics include a group of people wearing masks and the TRICARE logo.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Digital COVID19 Vaccine Documentation

Infographic
3/16/2021
Digital COVID19 Vaccine Documentation

Image of medical personnel wearing masks on the top right. Text reminds vaccinated persons to submit vaccination documentation to be added to your health record. Includes TRICARE logo on bottom right.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Screensaver: You Are At Increased Risk

Infographic
3/16/2021
Screensaver: You Are At Increased Risk

A screensaver graphic listing conditions that put beneficiaries 16-64 in the “at-risk” category. This includes cancer, smoking, kidney disease, and more. Graphics include a group of people wearing masks and the TRICARE logo.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Digital 65andOver What To Do

Infographic
3/16/2021
Digital 65andOver What To Do

Image of medical personnel wearing masks on the top right. Text reminds beneficiaries ages 65 and over to contact vaccinated persons to submit vaccination documentation to be added to your health record. Includes TRICARE logo on bottom right.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Your Time to Get Vaccine Infographic

Infographic
3/16/2021
Your Time to Get Vaccine Infographic

A graphic describing the COVID vaccination tiers. Tier 1a includes medical and healthcare workers; Tier 1b includes essential workers, those 75 and up; Tier 1c includes 65 and up, those at-risk; last is the remaining population. Graphics include groups of people wearing masks.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Family 65 and Over What To Do

Infographic
3/16/2021
Family 65 and Over What To Do

Image of medical personnel wearing masks on the top right. Text reminds beneficiaries to help those over the age of 65 make a vaccine appointment.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Printable Pharmacy Insert

Infographic
3/16/2021
Printable Pharmacy Insert

An insert with links to learn more about vaccination options. Options include MTFs, state health departments, and local retail pharmacy. Graphics include medical personnel wearing masks on the bottom as well as the TRICARE logo.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Is It Your Time to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?

Infographic
3/5/2021
Is It Your Time to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?

This Infographic informs TRICARE beneficiaries which tier they fall into as their local military treatment facility or clinic offers the vaccine.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Genetic sequence data for SARS-CoV-2

Infographic
6/5/2020
Genetic sequence data for SARS-CoV-2

Genetic sequence data for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes #COVID19, plays a vital role in force health protection efforts within the DoD. To jumpstart sequencing efforts, the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch's Global Emerging Infections Surveillance and Response applied a collaborative approach to sequencing capabilities. Resulting sequence data will provide critical information about transmission patterns, track diagnostic effectiveness, and guide the development and evaluation of medical countermeasures.

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division | Coronavirus | Global Emerging Infections Surveillance

Influenza

Infographic
7/1/2019
Influenza

Adminstration of a seasonal flu vaccination. (U.S. Navy photo)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Epidemiology and Analysis | Medical Surveillance Monthly Report | Public Health

Psittacosis

Infographic
7/1/2019
Psittacosis

Green-winged Macaw. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Epidemiology and Analysis | Medical Surveillance Monthly Report | Public Health

Zika

Infographic
7/1/2019
Zika

Anopheles merus mosquito. (CDC photo by James Gathany)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division | Epidemiology and Analysis | Medical Surveillance Monthly Report | Public Health

Mononucleosis

Infographic
7/1/2019
Mononucleosis

A specimen is tested for mononucleosis at the medical clinic on Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota (U.S. Air Force photo)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Epidemiology and Analysis | Medical Surveillance Monthly Report | Public Health

Norovirus

Infographic
6/1/2019
Norovirus

Norovirus Outbreak in Army Service Members, Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, May 2018 In May 2018, an outbreak of gastrointestinal illnesses due to norovirus occurred at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. The outbreak lasted 14 days, and a total of 91 cases, of which 8 were laboratory confirmed and 83 were suspected, were identified.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division | Epidemiology and Analysis | Medical Surveillance Monthly Report | Public Health

Female infertility

Infographic
6/1/2019
Female infertility

Female infertility, active component service women, U.S. Armed Forces, 2013–2018 This report presents the incidence and prevalence of diagnosed female infertility among active component service women. During 2013–2018, 8,744 active component women of childbearing potential were diagnosed with infertility for the first time, resulting in an overall incidence of 79.3 cases per 10,000 person-years (p-yrs).

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division | Epidemiology and Analysis | Medical Surveillance Monthly Report | Public Health
<< < ... 6 7 8 9 10  ... > >> 
Showing results 76 - 90 Page 6 of 14
Refine your search
Last Updated: May 19, 2022

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.