SANDSTON, Va. - A group of six medical professionals from the Virginia Air and Army National Guard traveled to Dushanbe, Tajikistan, earlier this year to conduct a medical information exchange with military forces there.
The five day trip was a follow on to a 2010 medical information exchange in Virginia and the goal was to assess and develop the medical readiness and capabilities of the Tajik Peacekeeping Forces in preparation for a 2013 NATO mission.
The Virginia National Guard Office of the State Surgeon provided the Tajik Ministry of Defense Officer Corps with an MIE in Richmond in 2010 and Tajik participants requested a similar presentation in Dushanbe for additional Tajik medical personnel.
The Tajik Peacekeeping Organization Force will mobilize in 2013 in support of a NATO mission and will require trained medical personnel and medically ready contract and conscript forces.
Representatives from the Tajik Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Emergency Management, Tajik National Guard and civilian representatives were in attendance for the August information exchange.
Some of the topics covered included health care providers, education and capabilities; echelons of medical care, physical health assessment, dental readiness, Soldier readiness processing, physical profiling, behavioral health, combat operational stress, post traumatic stress, field hygiene and sanitation; emergency medical operations; and CERF-P mission and capabilities.
"It was a very good MIE between Tajik and Virginia National Guard representatives," said Army Sgt. 1st Class Ellen Billmyer, one of the Virginia participants. "Tajik representatives are eager to utilize Virginia National Guard medical assistance for the development of Tajik medical capabilities."