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Image of two Airmen treating a patient.

Air Force SMART program sustains readiness and c...

Local News
Oct. 27, 2022

The Air Force’s Sustained Medical and Readiness Trained, or SMART, program has become a dynamic training...
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Sept. 24, 2022) – Capt. Sharon House, Naval Hospital Jacksonville director and Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command Jacksonville commander, together with the command’s Military Health System (MHS) GENESIS team, prepare to cut the ceremonial ribbon for the new electronic health record system MHS GENESIS on September 24 at the hospital. The ribbon cutting recognized the launch of the new electronic health record at the hospital and its Naval Branch Health Clinics Jacksonville, Key West and Mayport. (U.S. Navy photo by Yan Kennon, Naval Hospital Jacksonville/Released).

MHS GENESIS ‘Goes Live’ at Naval Hospital Jackso...

Local News
Sep. 26, 2022

Naval Hospital (NH) Jacksonville and Naval Branch Health Clinics (NBHC) Jacksonville, Key West and Mayport...
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Novavax COVID-19 Vaccine Now Available for 12 to 17 Year-Olds

Novavax COVID-19 Vaccine Now Available for 12 to...

Local News
Aug. 31, 2022

Adolescents ages 12 to 17 can now receive the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine, the fourth vaccine to be authorized...
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New COVID-19 Boosters Against Subvariants Coming Soon

New COVID-19 Boosters Against Subvariants Coming...

Local News
Aug. 30, 2022

Public health experts say COVID-19 cases are anticipated to spike again this fall, but new vaccine versions...
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Image of monkeypox.

Eligible Airmen, Guardians have access to more m...

Local News
Aug. 22, 2022

The Department of Defense is increasing its supply of the approved monkeypox vaccine, JYNNEOS, which allows...
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JBSA-Lackland, JBSA-Randolph Pharmacies change processes

JBSA-Lackland, JBSA-Randolph pharmacies implemen...

Local News
Aug. 19, 2022

The Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland and Randolph Pharmacy teams are changing some of their processes to...
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collage of active duty service women

After Dobbs Decision, Department of Defense Prov...

Local News
Aug. 16, 2022

When the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision protecting abortion rights, service...
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Walk-in clinic aids service members with musculoskeletal injuries

Walk-in clinic aids service members with musculo...

Local News
Aug. 16, 2022

The Brooke Army Medical Center Musculoskeletal Integrated Practice Unit, located in the Capt. Jennifer M...
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Local News | Jan. 21, 2022

Medical Leaders Address COVID-19 Concerns During Family Forum

The sheer volume of COVID-19 infections makes the virus and its variants a real challenge, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told a Blue Star Families forum in a virus update yesterday.

Speaking virtually along with Army Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Ronald J. Place, director of the Defense Health Agency, and Air Force Maj. Gen. Paul A. Friedrichs, command surgeon of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Fauci was the first to address military and veteran communities about the omicron variant of COVID-19.

"We're dealing, as we all know, with an unprecedented outbreak with COVID-19 that continually challenges us with new variants," Fauci said. "We've gone from the original strain through alpha, beta and delta. And now we're dealing with omicron, which is very unusual, because of this extraordinary capability of spreading so efficiently from human to human."

The United States still has a record number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, and the nation has about 2,000 deaths per day from the virus, he added.

But Fauci noted that by mid-February, various states should start to show signs of turning around and begin to come down in their virus case numbers and hospitalizations.

"There are some fundamental tenets of public health with [regard to] COVID that many families are already practicing, and that is to get vaccinated," he said, adding that boosters should be obtained, too.

Fauci also said it's important to wear well-fitted, high-quality masks consistently indoors when around other people. "The other thing that you could do is when you are engaged in social interactions, … you might want to take the extra step of getting a rapid [COVID-19] test, "he said, adding that masks clearly now have shown to be very effective in not only protecting people from getting infected, but protecting people from transmitting the virus to others.

The renowned physician called COVID-19 statistics stunning.

"The latest statistics are that an unvaccinated person has a 10-times greater chance of getting infected, a 17-times greater chance of getting hospitalized, and a 20-times chance of dying compared to a vaccinated person," Fauci said. "Those statistics alone should get you to be really enthusiastic about protecting yourself and your family."

He noted that when people who are infected with COVID-19 get vaccinated afterward, they have an extremely high level of protection. And, he added, "If someone gets vaccinated and boosted, and they get some breakthrough infection, the level of that subsequent protection is very, very high."

"The great news in all of the challenges of this pandemic is that our military has continued to defend our nation for the last two years, in spite of all of the challenges that we face," Friedrichs told Blue Star Families. "And in large part, that's due to you all at home, making it possible for those of us who are still in uniform to do what we have to do."

The Joint Staff surgeon said the Defense Department is stepping up again by deploying about 400 people last week to help hospitals around the country, another 500 are deploying this week, and 500 more military medics are also going out shortly behind that wave to help hospitals all over the country.

"We know that during this great need and challenge our country is facing, it's the DOD who the country turns to for support," he said.

"The most important thing that we ask you all to continue to do is keep faith with your service members if you're a military family. This [pandemic] happens once every 100 years. Hopefully, we'll never see it again. But please know, we all want this to be over as soon as possible. And you're helping us when you get vaccinated. You're helping us when you make sure that kids are able to go to school; you're helping us as we fight through this latest enemy that we face," Friedrichs said.

"We ask a great deal of our military families. We're asking even more now, and we know that," he told families.

Even though the DOD community has been affected with COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations as much as the civilian sector, consistent with national trends, a much smaller percentage of inpatients are requiring intensive care unit care, and that's good news, Place said.

"The point is, the vaccines work," the general added. "If you listen to nothing else, not only for yourself, but for your families and your community, I strongly urge everyone to get vaccinated and get a booster when appropriate."

One of the first things that Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III communicated during his first day in the Pentagon was that the COVID-19 pandemic was a national security threat, and the DOD would be part of the whole-of-government response, Place noted. "And I'll acknowledge that our military medical personnel have answered, and continue to, answer that call," he said.

Local News

 

 

Local News | Jan. 21, 2022

Medical Leaders Address COVID-19 Concerns During Family Forum

The sheer volume of COVID-19 infections makes the virus and its variants a real challenge, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told a Blue Star Families forum in a virus update yesterday.

Speaking virtually along with Army Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Ronald J. Place, director of the Defense Health Agency, and Air Force Maj. Gen. Paul A. Friedrichs, command surgeon of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Fauci was the first to address military and veteran communities about the omicron variant of COVID-19.

"We're dealing, as we all know, with an unprecedented outbreak with COVID-19 that continually challenges us with new variants," Fauci said. "We've gone from the original strain through alpha, beta and delta. And now we're dealing with omicron, which is very unusual, because of this extraordinary capability of spreading so efficiently from human to human."

The United States still has a record number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, and the nation has about 2,000 deaths per day from the virus, he added.

But Fauci noted that by mid-February, various states should start to show signs of turning around and begin to come down in their virus case numbers and hospitalizations.

"There are some fundamental tenets of public health with [regard to] COVID that many families are already practicing, and that is to get vaccinated," he said, adding that boosters should be obtained, too.

Fauci also said it's important to wear well-fitted, high-quality masks consistently indoors when around other people. "The other thing that you could do is when you are engaged in social interactions, … you might want to take the extra step of getting a rapid [COVID-19] test, "he said, adding that masks clearly now have shown to be very effective in not only protecting people from getting infected, but protecting people from transmitting the virus to others.

The renowned physician called COVID-19 statistics stunning.

"The latest statistics are that an unvaccinated person has a 10-times greater chance of getting infected, a 17-times greater chance of getting hospitalized, and a 20-times chance of dying compared to a vaccinated person," Fauci said. "Those statistics alone should get you to be really enthusiastic about protecting yourself and your family."

He noted that when people who are infected with COVID-19 get vaccinated afterward, they have an extremely high level of protection. And, he added, "If someone gets vaccinated and boosted, and they get some breakthrough infection, the level of that subsequent protection is very, very high."

"The great news in all of the challenges of this pandemic is that our military has continued to defend our nation for the last two years, in spite of all of the challenges that we face," Friedrichs told Blue Star Families. "And in large part, that's due to you all at home, making it possible for those of us who are still in uniform to do what we have to do."

The Joint Staff surgeon said the Defense Department is stepping up again by deploying about 400 people last week to help hospitals around the country, another 500 are deploying this week, and 500 more military medics are also going out shortly behind that wave to help hospitals all over the country.

"We know that during this great need and challenge our country is facing, it's the DOD who the country turns to for support," he said.

"The most important thing that we ask you all to continue to do is keep faith with your service members if you're a military family. This [pandemic] happens once every 100 years. Hopefully, we'll never see it again. But please know, we all want this to be over as soon as possible. And you're helping us when you get vaccinated. You're helping us when you make sure that kids are able to go to school; you're helping us as we fight through this latest enemy that we face," Friedrichs said.

"We ask a great deal of our military families. We're asking even more now, and we know that," he told families.

Even though the DOD community has been affected with COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations as much as the civilian sector, consistent with national trends, a much smaller percentage of inpatients are requiring intensive care unit care, and that's good news, Place said.

"The point is, the vaccines work," the general added. "If you listen to nothing else, not only for yourself, but for your families and your community, I strongly urge everyone to get vaccinated and get a booster when appropriate."

One of the first things that Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III communicated during his first day in the Pentagon was that the COVID-19 pandemic was a national security threat, and the DOD would be part of the whole-of-government response, Place noted. "And I'll acknowledge that our military medical personnel have answered, and continue to, answer that call," he said.

Learn More about COVID-19 and the COVID-19 Vaccine.