Wednesday, May 13, 2020

DOD Awards $134 Million Contract, Providing Personal Protective Equipment For Medical Personnel At 15,000 Nursing Homes

Statement attributed to Lt. Col. Mike Andrews, Department of Defense spokesman:

“The Department of Defense’s Defense Logistics Agency, in coordination with FEMA and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, has signed a $134 million contract award with the Federal Resources Supply Company to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) kits including protective eyewear, gloves, gowns, and masks for medical personnel at over 15,000 nursing home locations.

Deliveries have started this week in New York, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia and will be completed across the United States, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and Territory of Guam by the end of June at FEMA designated priority locations.

The total quantities required for the kit components are: Eyewear: 1.2 million goggles, Gloves: 64.4 million pairs, Gowns: 12.8 million, Masks: 13.8 million. Distribution plans may be impacted based on the contracted rate of production and material distribution changes based on transportation availability.

The Department remains closely partnered with FEMA and HHS, providing almost $2.3 billion in life-saving medical services, supplies and equipment to service members and federal agencies in the nation's whole-of-government approach to the coronavirus pandemic.

Fort Riley Eases Transition for New Soldiers During Pandemic

May 13, 2020 | BY Army Sgt. Timothy Brokhoff

The 1st Infantry Division welcomed 152 new soldiers who reported to Fort Riley, Kansas, after completing training at Fort Benning, Georgia. Upon their arrival, the soldiers were placed under temporary restriction of movement to prevent the possible spread of COVID-19 on Fort Riley and in the surrounding region.

Army 1st Sgt. Christian Burt, the deputy mayor of the restriction of movement site, said the soldiers recently completed their one-station-unit training at Fort Benning and will report to their assigned unit at Fort Riley following completion of their temporary restriction of movement. The goal of the site is to train and care for soldiers while they're in transition, he explained.

"We know it's hard, especially for a group of new soldiers dealing with the COVID pandemic," Burt said. "They're just coming in, and this is their first introduction to the Army."

Fort Riley and the surrounding community have taken steps to make the transition as comfortable as possible, while actively taking precautions to prevent worsening the spread of the virus in the region.

"The USO has been doing an awesome job," Burt said. "They've been bringing video games, TV's, DVD players; just a lot of stuff for entertainment."

The soldiers are practicing social distancing at all times, said Army Capt. Thomas Vierra, the mayor of the restriction of movement site.

"There's at least 6 feet of space and wall lockers between each bunk," Vierra said. "We disinfect the barracks and laundry facilities regularly, and the gym equipment is disinfected after each use."

The restriction of movement site is just part of the 1st Infantry Division's larger strategy to protect soldiers, prevent the spread of COVID-19 and preserve readiness to answer the nation's call if necessary.

"The Army is taking care of its soldiers," Burt said. "The community, the USO, everyone supports us. We truly do appreciate it. We basically want the community to know that we're trying our best to keep the virus contained [and] we're trying to stop the spread of COVID-19."

(Army Sgt. Timothy Brokhoff is assigned to the 19th Public Affairs Detachment)

Pensacola Sailors Return From COVID-19 Efforts in New York

May 13, 2020 | BY MARCUS HENRY

Thirteen of the 18 Naval Medicine Readiness and Training Command Pensacola sailors sent to support the Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort's COVID-19 relief efforts in New York returned to Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida, May 5.

The sailors spent 31 days aboard the Comfort providing relief to New York City's health care system overstressed by the surge of COVID-19 patients.

The Comfort arrived in Hampton Roads Harbor in Norfolk, Virginia, May 2, where the ship was disinfected and the crew was tested for COVID-19.

"I am incredibly proud and honored to serve with these sailors," Navy Capt. David Webster, the commanding officer of Naval Medicine Readiness and Training Command Pensacola, said. "I am appreciative of everything they've done for our service and our nation."

In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, every sailor returning from the ship was tested for COVID-19 and placed on a 14-day restriction of movement. The sailors will be tested for COVID-19 a second time after the completion of the 14-day quarantine.

Established in 1826, the Naval Medicine Readiness and Training Command Pensacola's mission is to deliver high-quality health care to ensure a medically ready force and a ready medical force through strategic partnerships and innovation. The command comprises the main hospital and ten branch health clinics across five states.

(Marcus Henry is assigned to Naval Hospital Pensacola.)