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

No effort spared to bring home seriously wounded Soldier

Air Force Capt. Natasha Cardinal, 86th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron critical care nurse, monitors her patient during a flight from Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan to San Antonio, Texas. Critical care air transport teams are rapidly deployable teams consisting of a physician, critical care nurse and a respiratory therapist who provide a mobile intensive care unit for complex, critically wounded patients. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Ryan Mancuso) Air Force Capt. Natasha Cardinal, 86th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron critical care nurse, monitors her patient during a flight from Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan to San Antonio, Texas. Critical care air transport teams are rapidly deployable teams consisting of a physician, critical care nurse and a respiratory therapist who provide a mobile intensive care unit for complex, critically wounded patients. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Ryan Mancuso)

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. Over four days, three aircraft, 18 medical specialists, more than 24,000 gallons of fuel, and 100 liters of blood were committed across an 8,000-mile journey to a single goal – saving the life of one Soldier.

In mid-August, Air Mobility Command’s 618th Air Operations Center was notified of an injured Soldier in need of urgent aeromedical evacuation out of Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan. Immediately, AOC Airmen started to build a mission – REACH 797 – to help save this one Soldier whose survival was in question after being critically wounded in a blast.

Within the first hours of the Soldier’s arrival to the Craig Joint Theater Hospital at Bagram Airfield, medical teams administered multiple blood transfusions, and a lead surgeon determined the Soldier was in need of a special team from the Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas.

To form this team, the 455th Expeditionary Medical Group worked in concert with the En-Route Patient Staging System, known as ERPSS. This flight comes from a specialized section in the hospital with personnel who are experts in patient movement and coordinate their transport out of the area to receive more specialized care.

During those critical days following the injury, the surgical services team at Bagram performed multiple lifesaving and stabilizing surgeries. Additionally, a walking blood bank was initiated and more than 100 Soldiers lined up to donate within 15 minutes of the call to ensure a sufficient supply of blood.

“Their quick work led to the patient being taken to a higher echelon of care in under 48 hours,” said Air Force Maj. Lisa Haik, 455th ERPSS Flight commander. “Overall, the actions of all involved represent just a fraction of what the CJTH can provide to our warriors.”

Twenty-four hours later, after being diverted from another mission, a Dover Air Force Base C-17 Globemaster III and its crew arrived at Bagram and immediately went into crew rest in preparation to fly a non-stop, 8,000-mile flight to San Antonio.

“We had to load up a very complex flight plan into the software on the aircraft,” said Air Force Maj. Dan Kudlacz, REACH 797 C-17 pilot and aircraft commander from Dover’s 436th Airlift Wing. “Couple that with the fact that we were flying into a combat zone, carrying 18 additional medical crew members, and transporting a critical patient whose injuries require a cabin altitude restriction. You can begin to see that there was a lot to manage from alert to liftoff.”

The next day, the Soldier was evacuated out of Afghanistan on the C-17 for the long journey home and was treated by AE and Critical Care Air Transport Team, or CCATT, Airmen from the 10th Expeditionary Aeromedical Evacuation Flight, alongside an Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation or ECMO team from the 59th Medical Wing.

“There were so many moving parts to this mission that we knew we had to get every aspect 100 percent correct the first time,” said Kudlacz. “Should one thing have fallen out of line during the flight, it could have … impacted this Soldier's life, which is something that weighed heavily on all of us when we received notification of this mission.”

During the flight, the Soldier was treated Airmen from the 10th EAEF, alongside an Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation or ECMO team from the 59th MDW, which was prepared to assist should breathing problems arise.

Just hours into the flight from Bagram, a MacDill KC-135 Stratotanker crew was preparing for a routine mission from the tarmac at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, Great Britain, when they got the call to rendezvous with and offload more than 24,000 gallons of fuel to keep a life-saving C-17 airborne during its non-stop AE journey from Afghanistan to Texas.

“MacDill Airmen fueled the hands that heal during this critical mission,” said Air Force Col. Stephen Snelson, 6th Air Mobility Wing commander. “Days where we can flex to support our joint teammates reminds us why we signed up to serve in the first place.”

As the topped-off C-17 pulled away from the KC-135 in the skies over Europe, a second MacDill tanker crew, near Bangor, Maine was diverted to complete the air bridge to Texas.

Although refueling during an AE flight is uncommon due to the turbulence it can cause, it was necessary to ensure the Soldier reached specialized care in the United States as quickly as possible.

“This mission involved a tremendous amount of teamwork; between the skill of the aircrews operating under exhausting conditions, to our AOC planners who determined aircraft and aircrew availability, provided mission support and tailored specialized AE care en-route, and the medical professionals who provided unrivaled critical care,” said Air Force Brig. Gen. Jimmy Canlas, 618th AOC commander. “With a Soldier’s life on the line, these Airmen worked 24/7, across multiple time zones, to pull together all the pieces and ensure this Soldier made it home.”

Following the non-stop, 20-hour journey, the injured Soldier reached Kelly Field, Texas. From there, he was transported to Brooke Army Medical Center to continue receiving life-saving care – and reunite with his family.

“Everyone working around the clock to safely bring our patriots home is awe-inspiring,” said Snelson. “This mission was a demonstration of the promises we make to care for those who serve.”

The Soldier, whose name is being withheld due to personal and family privacy, is currently receiving intensive care in San Antonio, Texas.

“The priority our military places on saving the lives of its service members is unparalleled,” said Air Force Lt. Col. Scott King, CCATT Chief. “REACH 797 demonstrates that for those who go into harm’s way, no expense or effort will be spared to bring them home to their families and loved ones.”

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

You also may be interested in...

Puget Sound MHS plans for a joint medical environment

Article
7/15/2019
Puget Sound logo

Puget Sound MHS will transition to Defense Health Agency management beginning on Oct. 1

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Implementing Congressional Direction for Reform of the Military Health System

Policy

Policy Memorandum, signed by Deputy Secretary of Defense Patrick M. Shanahan, to direct implementation of the Military Health System (MHS) organizational reform required by the National Defense Authorization Act.

DHA-PI 6025.03: Standard Processes and Criteria for Establishing Urgent Care (UC) Services and Expanded Hours and Appointment Availability in Primary Care in Medical Treatment Facilities (MTFs) to Support an Integrated Health Care System (IHCS)

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI), based on the authority of References (a) through (c), and in accordance with the guidance of References (d) through (l), describes standard processes and criteria for the establishment of UC services and expanded hours and appointment availability in primary care in MTFs.

A Family's Smile

Video
9/27/2017
Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Kerry Latham restored quality of life to Killian McKinney, a baby with a cleft lip and palate, during a plastic surgery procedure at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda Md., Aug. 28, 2017.  By treating McKinney, Latham supported the McKinney military family and enabled them to focus on the mission.

Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Kerry Latham restored quality of life to Killian McKinney, a baby with a cleft lip and palate, during a plastic surgery procedure at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda Md., Aug. 28, 2017. By treating McKinney, Latham supported the McKinney military family and enabled them to focus on the mission.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

Secretary Shulkin talks with Providers about Prosthetics

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Secretary Shulkin tours Walter Reed

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Secretary Shulkin meets service dogs Walter Reed

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Secretary Shulkin visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Why do you want to be a military doctor?

Video
3/30/2017
Military medical students and junior officers share why they want to be a military medical doctor.

During the 2017 Military Health System Female Physician Leadership Conference, we asked some military medical students and junior officers to share why they want to be a military medical doctor.

Recommended Content:

Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Access to Health Care | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Walter Reed Bethesda terrain park

Photo
11/1/2016
The new terrain park outside of the Military Advanced Training Center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center provides another means for Walter Reed Bethesda physical therapists to simulate uneven terrain for their amputee patients without having to go to specific destinations to do so. (DoD photo by Mark Oswell)

The new terrain park outside of the Military Advanced Training Center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center provides another means for Walter Reed Bethesda physical therapists to simulate uneven terrain for their amputee patients without having to go to specific destinations to do so. (DoD photo by Mark Oswell)

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

FBCH Emergency Room

Photo
11/1/2016
Fort Belvoir Community Hospital Emergency Room (U.S. Army photo by Reese Brown)

Fort Belvoir Community Hospital Emergency Room (U.S. Army photo by Reese Brown)

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

Brooke Army Medical Center Transparency

Video
7/28/2016
thumbnail image of BAMC

This video highlights Brooke Army Medical Center's transparency initiatives and what they are doing to publish information about Patient Safety, Health Outcomes, Quality of Care and Patient Satisfaction.

Recommended Content:

MHS Quality, Patient Safety, and Access Information (for Patients) | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Military Health System Prescription Transfer Procedures

Policy

Effective immediately, all Department of Defense (DoD) military treatment facility (MTF) outpatient pharmacies will accept patient requests for prescription transfers from another MTF and from retail pharmacies. When another pharmacy requests prescription transfer information on behalf of a patient, DoD MTF outpatient pharmacies will respond to the inquirer in a timely manner.

Military Health System's Guide to Access Success

Publication
12/15/2008

This document establishes roles, responsibilities, definitions and guidance for implementing, sustaining and managing military treatment facility (MTF) Access to Care (ATC) in the Military Health System (MHS).

Recommended Content:

Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Access to Health Care | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Puget Sound MHS plans for a joint medical environment

Article
7/15/2019
Puget Sound logo

Puget Sound MHS will transition to Defense Health Agency management beginning on Oct. 1

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Implementing Congressional Direction for Reform of the Military Health System

Policy

Policy Memorandum, signed by Deputy Secretary of Defense Patrick M. Shanahan, to direct implementation of the Military Health System (MHS) organizational reform required by the National Defense Authorization Act.

DHA-PI 6025.03: Standard Processes and Criteria for Establishing Urgent Care (UC) Services and Expanded Hours and Appointment Availability in Primary Care in Medical Treatment Facilities (MTFs) to Support an Integrated Health Care System (IHCS)

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Procedural Instruction (DHA-PI), based on the authority of References (a) through (c), and in accordance with the guidance of References (d) through (l), describes standard processes and criteria for the establishment of UC services and expanded hours and appointment availability in primary care in MTFs.

A Family's Smile

Video
9/27/2017
Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Kerry Latham restored quality of life to Killian McKinney, a baby with a cleft lip and palate, during a plastic surgery procedure at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda Md., Aug. 28, 2017.  By treating McKinney, Latham supported the McKinney military family and enabled them to focus on the mission.

Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Kerry Latham restored quality of life to Killian McKinney, a baby with a cleft lip and palate, during a plastic surgery procedure at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda Md., Aug. 28, 2017. By treating McKinney, Latham supported the McKinney military family and enabled them to focus on the mission.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

Secretary Shulkin talks with Providers about Prosthetics

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Secretary Shulkin tours Walter Reed

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Secretary Shulkin meets service dogs Walter Reed

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Secretary Shulkin visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center

Photo
4/28/2017
David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

David J. Shulkin, Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, visits Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda, Maryland, April 27. Shulkin, who visited the medical center for the first time, spoke with various providers throughout the facilities to learn about the medical care given at the hospital.

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics | DoD/VA Sharing Initiatives

Why do you want to be a military doctor?

Video
3/30/2017
Military medical students and junior officers share why they want to be a military medical doctor.

During the 2017 Military Health System Female Physician Leadership Conference, we asked some military medical students and junior officers to share why they want to be a military medical doctor.

Recommended Content:

Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Access to Health Care | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Walter Reed Bethesda terrain park

Photo
11/1/2016
The new terrain park outside of the Military Advanced Training Center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center provides another means for Walter Reed Bethesda physical therapists to simulate uneven terrain for their amputee patients without having to go to specific destinations to do so. (DoD photo by Mark Oswell)

The new terrain park outside of the Military Advanced Training Center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center provides another means for Walter Reed Bethesda physical therapists to simulate uneven terrain for their amputee patients without having to go to specific destinations to do so. (DoD photo by Mark Oswell)

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

FBCH Emergency Room

Photo
11/1/2016
Fort Belvoir Community Hospital Emergency Room (U.S. Army photo by Reese Brown)

Fort Belvoir Community Hospital Emergency Room (U.S. Army photo by Reese Brown)

Recommended Content:

Military Hospitals and Clinics

Brooke Army Medical Center Transparency

Video
7/28/2016
thumbnail image of BAMC

This video highlights Brooke Army Medical Center's transparency initiatives and what they are doing to publish information about Patient Safety, Health Outcomes, Quality of Care and Patient Satisfaction.

Recommended Content:

MHS Quality, Patient Safety, and Access Information (for Patients) | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Military Health System Prescription Transfer Procedures

Policy

Effective immediately, all Department of Defense (DoD) military treatment facility (MTF) outpatient pharmacies will accept patient requests for prescription transfers from another MTF and from retail pharmacies. When another pharmacy requests prescription transfer information on behalf of a patient, DoD MTF outpatient pharmacies will respond to the inquirer in a timely manner.

Military Health System's Guide to Access Success

Publication
12/15/2008

This document establishes roles, responsibilities, definitions and guidance for implementing, sustaining and managing military treatment facility (MTF) Access to Care (ATC) in the Military Health System (MHS).

Recommended Content:

Access, Cost, Quality, and Safety | Access to Health Care | Military Hospitals and Clinics
<< < ... 6 7 8 9 10 > >> 
Showing results 136 - 149 Page 10 of 10

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.