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117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

Lt. Col. Pam Carroll, 117th Medical Group, chief nurse, administers immunization shots to Airmen as part of a mobilization shot team at Sumpter Smith Joint National Guard Base, Alabama, July 25, 2020. The purpose of the team is to go to individual's work shops to give immunizations to increase efficiency in accomplishing real world missions and to keep Airmen up to date on medical requirements. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Jeremy Farson)

117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

Lt. Col. Pam Carroll, 117th Medical Group, chief nurse, administers immunization shots to Airmen as part of a mobilization shot team at Sumpter Smith Joint National Guard Base, Alabama, July 25, 2020. The purpose of the team is to go to individual's work shops to give immunizations to increase efficiency in accomplishing real world missions and to keep Airmen up to date on medical requirements. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Jeremy Farson)

117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

Lt. Col. Pam Carroll, chief nurse, and 2nd Lt. Cory Tarvin, clinical nurse, both of 117th Medical Group, look over immunization requirements for Airmen as part of a mobilization shot team at Sumpter Smith Joint National Guard Base, Alabama, July 25, 2020. The purpose of the team is to go to individual's work shops to give immunizations to increase efficiency in accomplishing real world missions and to keep Airmen up to date on medical requirements. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Jeremy Farson)

117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

2nd Lt. Cory Tarvin, 117th Medical Group, clinical nurse, administers immunization shots to Airmen as part of a mobilization shot team at Sumpter Smith Joint National Guard Base, Alabama, July 25, 2020. The purpose of the team is to go to individual's work shops to give immunizations to increase efficiency in accomplishing real world missions and to keep Airmen up to date on medical requirements. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Jeremy Farson)

117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

2nd Lt. Cory Tarvin, 117th Medical Group, clinical nurse, administers immunization shots to Airmen as part of a mobilization shot team at Sumpter Smith Joint National Guard Base, Alabama, July 25, 2020. The purpose of the team is to go to individual's work shops to give immunizations to increase efficiency in accomplishing real world missions and to keep Airmen up to date on medical requirements. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Jeremy Farson)

117 MDG Brings Medical Services to Units

Lt. Col. Pam Carroll, 117th Medical Group, chief nurse, administers immunization shots to Airmen as part of a mobilization shot team at Sumpter Smith Joint National Guard Base, Alabama, July 25, 2020. The purpose of the team is to go to individual's work shops to give immunizations to increase efficiency in accomplishing real world missions and to keep Airmen up to date on medical requirements. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Jeremy Farson)

Sumpter Smith JNGB, Ala. --

The 117th Medical Group implemented a mobilization shot team on 25 July to assist units in accomplishing their missions and in facilitating Airmen to meet their medical immunization requirements.

The two-person team comprised of Lt. Col. Pam Carroll, Chief Nurse, and 2nd Lt. Cory Tarvin, Clinical Nurse, brought immunization medical services to work locations throughout the base. The creation of the team was an idea from Carroll based on what the unit did approximately 20 years ago. 

“I was one of the members on the team back then and it was done for convenience to the units by providing increased assistance in getting members current on their immunizations,” said Carroll. “It just made sense to make this happen now because we need to limit movement in areas and large crowds. We are a customer service organization and we want to be there for the base and people were really appreciative and glad we were at their work locations.”

The team serves a dual purpose. It limits exposure to COVID-19 in eliminating unnecessary locations members have to visit and decreasing the number of people having to gather at the medical group building. Mission capability increases by minimizing the amount of time Airmen are away from their work responsibilities.

“This team helps units get in compliance with individual medical readiness, but it is also beneficial in not having members leave their work areas with the decreased on-base manning units currently have working now,” said Carroll.

Tarvin worked with Unit Health Monitors (UHM) to coordinate target times to visit work locations when Airmen would be most accessible.

“With flight schedules and classes or functions particular to each unit it is time consuming getting in touch with the UHMs and getting a schedule together.” said Tarvin. “The monitors were cooperative helping me set up everything and in getting their members to meet requirements.”

The team’s process goal is to have members that are present identified, administer the necessary shots and then have them immediately return to work. When the mobilization shot team arrived at work centers they had rosters with who needed which immunizations already printed. They also updated records at the medical group after their rounds were complete. Both of these steps increased efficiency by delaying administrative tasks of searching databases for individual’s needed shots and entering post inoculation information that are typically done while the person waits when they report to the medical building. 

The mobilization shot team was able to get approximately 20 individuals in compliance with medical requirements during the day. A team like this is essential now and going forward as we continue to battle COVID and keep readiness at the appropriate level to meet the needs of our state and nation. Carroll plans on continuing to implement the team short-term due to COVID-19 but also possibly on the longer term after things get back to a more typical operational tempo.  

117th Medical Group continues to use innovative and creative management practices to maintain readiness in this current work environment.