Twenty-nine members from the 104th Fighter Wing Medical Group and 13 members from the 174th Attack Wing Medical Group completed hands-on Medical Field Annual Training at Tripler Army Medical Center, Honolulu, Hawaii. This training allowed 104MDG and 174AW members the opportunity to provide support to an active-duty military hospital, building their experience, readiness, and confidence along the way.
MFAT is a program focused on specific job training, readiness skills training, task completion, skill-level upgrade training, and unit-type-code sustainment training that cannot be accomplished at the home station facility. At TAMC, 104MDG members are able to apply what they learn through knowledge-based training to a real-live environment.
Several career fields trained at TAMC, including public health, medical administration, and aerospace medical service. Chief Master Sgt. Chester Bennett, 104MDG Superintendent assisted with the planning for this mission.
“This training benefits not only the Air National Guard but our local communities as well,'' said Bennett. “The results of a training event such as this give us the confidence as a medical group that our troops are equipped with the skills necessary to support any taskings whether they are military, humanitarian, stateside or overseas.”
Recent taskings have a significant impact on the health and well-being of civilians throughout the hospitals within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, he said.
104MDG members were spread throughout TAMC and received their hands-on training in areas of the hospital such as Labor and Delivery, Anesthesiology, Emergency, Intensive Care, Medical Records, and Medical Supply. Lt. Col. Anna Barrows, 104MDG Chief Nurse, planned the training schedule for the aerospace medical service technicians working at the hospital.
While working in the hospital, 104FW and 174AW members were under the supervision of Edwynn Johnson, TAMC Reserve Component Operations Specialist. Johnson manages the reserve training program and has been in charge of the program for 11 years. TAMC helps to train and shape members across all components and services because a trained and ready force is a prepared, efficient and effective force, he said. In 2022 alone, he plans to see more than 400 members go through training at TAMC.
“Reserve Units training here at TAMC puts our staff in a position to share their knowledge, skills, and experiences, passing on what they know as well as gaining from those that they train,” said Johnson. “Often reserve members that arrive for training do not get the experience at their home station at the level that TAMC provides. I have also seen Reserve members that arrive and have special skill sets that TAMC is short of staff in and can help provide critical care,” he said.
With just over 40 ANG members working at TAMC, Johnson estimates that the medical group saved TAMC approximately $60,000 in overhead costs.