Personal account highlights importance of upcoming strategy

| January 30, 2015 | 0 Comments

Spc Lauren Cole, Pacific Regional Medical Command Public Affairs

HONOLULU — Lt. Col George Corbari, U.S. Army-Pacific Command, Plans and Policy director, was invited to brief at the Pacific Regional Medical Command Strategic Off-Site held at Fort Shafter, Jan. 20-21.

Lt. Col. George Corbari, director, Plans and Policy, USARPAC, speaks before an audience. (Courtesy photo)

Lt. Col. George Corbari, director,
Plans and Policy, USARPAC, speaks
before an audience. (Courtesy photo)

A typical strategic brief does not invoke an emotionally charged presentation; however, when Corbari began to tell of his personal experiences with Army medicine, he was overcome with emotion.

“From the moment he was injured, his medic did everything right, which was key to keeping him alive until the MEDVAC got there and another team of medics … took over. (They) did everything right, keeping him alive to get him to a surgical hospital in Kandahar, where again, a team of professionals descended on him, did everything possible to first save his life, and secondly, saved as much of his legs as possible,” Corbari remarked on the evening in 2011.

That’s when his son-in-law stepped on a pressure plate improvised explosive device (IED), resulting in the loss of both legs below the knee.

The off-site was held to discuss the Pacific Army Medicine Campaign Support Plan to transform PRMC to a “Medical” Theater Enabling Command in Support of U.S. Army-Pacific.

The current estimated survival rate from point of injury through the evacuation process to a level three health care facility is above 90 percent, a remarkable rate compared to an 86.5 percent survival rate during Vietnam. However, it still leaves room for improvement.

The Pacific Army Medicine Campaign Support Plan is designed to realign, rebalance and enhance medical care provided within the Pacific region and to continue to improve on the Army’s health care and survival rates for all Soldiers.

Brig. Gen. Patrick Sargent, commanding general, PRMC, stated, “As we transition to a Theater Enabling Medical Command, we are going to be able to provide more responsive support to the commander. Likewise, we’re going to be able to deliver more responsive and enhanced, highly reliable, medical care throughout the Pacific theater.”

Army UH-60 MEDEVAC Black Hawks, like the ones pictured, now carry blood products during MEDEVAC missions. (File photo by Sgt. Daniel Schroeder, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade Public Affairs)

Army UH-60 MEDEVAC Black Hawks, like the ones pictured, now carry blood products during MEDEVAC missions. (File photo by Sgt. Daniel Schroeder, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade Public Affairs)

The realignment will allow Army medicine to be more aligned with Army service component commanders, as well as core commanders.

It will also create a synergistic effect of Table of Distribution and Allowances (TDA) medicine and operational medicine to provide the combatant commanders “one voice” in caring for the medical needs of their Soldiers.

The rebalance will also allow Army medicine to deliver a more integrated health care system and a more enterprise approach to complex challenges that currently face the medical community on the battlefield.

“I want to reassure our families and commanders that we remain committed to world class medical care to all of the Soldiers and their families serving in the Pacific,” Sargent stated.

Corbari’s son-in-law wanted to remain anonymous; however, the little information that was provided stated he was deployed with 10th Mountain, 3rd Brigade.

Corbari said he had a special sense of purpose attending the off-site and sharing his story with other leaders within the Pacific as they plan the theater’s medical considerations.

Corbari added, “As an operational warfighter, knowing the tremendous medical support behind us gives a sense of invincibility. If you know something happens to you, there will be people there to take great care of you.”

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Category: Health, News, Safety

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