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National Guard response to COVID-19

20-014 | April 1, 2020

As of Wednesday morning, more than 17,250 Air and Army National Guard professionals are supporting the COVID-19 crisis response at the direction of their governors. Ten states, two territories and the District of Columbia have been approved for use of federal funds for state missions under Title 32, with another 27 requests moving through the approval process.

“As our nation fights its greatest challenge in recent memory, we are all going to need draw on our inner strength and resilience to win this war and comfort those in pain. We will prevail – and we each must bring our best selves to the task every day to overcome this as fast as possible for our great country.” Gen. Joseph Lengyel, Chief of the National Guard Bureau

National Guard support focuses primarily on supporting a surge for enhanced medical capacity and logistics support.

“This response isn't just about delivering food or supporting COVID test centers,” Lengyel said. “It's about protecting our children, parents and grandparents. Our nation is looking to the National Guard to help and we can't let them down.”

Current National Guard COVID-19 response missions include, but are not limited to:

  • Full time 24 hour state Emergency Operations Center staffing to synchronize National Guard efforts with local and state mission partners to plan and execute an effective response;
  • Working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to increase medical capacity; Supporting warehouse operations and logistics efforts to help deliver critical supplies; Delivering food in hard-hit communities;
  • Manning call centers to be a knowledgeable and calming voice;
  • Providing critical Personal Protective Equipment training and delivery to civilian first responders;
  • Performing sample collection and delivery to medical personnel;
  • Providing support and symptoms screening to testing facilities and passenger terminals; Providing transportation and assessment support to healthcare providers

If you were going to design an ideal military force to assist with a response like COVID-19, it would be the National Guard. We are 450,000 strong in every state, territory, nearly every zip code in the country. Less time and distance = more lives saved.

The National Guard Bureau (NGB) facilitates integration and synchronization of National Guard support to civil authorities and associated planning between states, the Department of Defense and federal partners. The National Guard's Coordination Center is a 24 / 7 operation working at increased capacity in anticipation of COVID-19 requirements and to ensure unified and rapid response efforts between its state and federal partners.

The National Guards of the 50 states, three territories and the District of Colombia have a very deep bench of nearly 450,000 experienced and proven Air and Army National Guard professionals. Guard units frequently train side-by-side with state and local emergency responders, making them well-suited for domestic operations.

National Guard members work and live in every community across the nation and have a proven track record of success supporting civilian authorities after homeland emergencies. The National Guard has unique capabilities such as its Civil Support Teams and CERFPs that could provide local first responders with additional resources to combat COVID-19.

For information about Dual Status Commander, access the story at this link: https://www.nationalguard.mil/News/Article/2128146/guard-dual-status-allows-flexibility-rapid- covid-19-response/

For information regarding this press release, please send an email to the National Guard Bureau Media Operations desk at ng.ncr.ngb-arng.mesg.ngb-media-desk-owner@mail.mil.

National Guard COVID-19 Response Efforts and State PAO Contact Information:

Arizona:
Arizona Guard members are unloading trucks at grocery stores, keeping products available to people in the communities.

Arkansas:
The Arkansas National Guard is providing triage support at the University of Arkansas Medical Center. The mobile triage center has improved operations flow and decreased patient volume into the emergency department. Additionally, 107 patients were triaged by Arkansas National Guard personnel.

California:
The California National Guard is leveraging some of its highly-trained leaders to manage food banks.

Florida:
Florida Guard members have assisted in the testing of nearly 12,000 people for the COVID-19 virus.

Illinois:
The Illinois National Guard is supporting Community Based Testing Sites on the Northwest side of Chicago. The testing is specifically for medical personnel and first responders on the front lines of the COVID-19 response.

Louisiana:
The Louisiana National Guard’s 62nd Civil Support Team is providing training on the proper donning and doffing of Personnel Protective Equipment to health care providers and emergency management staff at the Morial Convention Center.

New York:
The New York National Guard has 2,780 personnel on missions across the state. The NYNG is supporting five drive-thru testing sites, supporting testing for more than 3,000 people a day.

Six Joint Task Forces are operating on Long Island, New York City, the Hudson Valley, Capital Region, Syracuse and Buffalo to support state and local governments. In New York City, NYNG personnel continue to support the arrival of the city’s first patients at the Jacob Javits Center FEMA field hospital, additionally NYNG continue to manage the site as the unified command post for the multi-agency response at the Javits Center.

U.S. Army medical personnel from the 9th and 531st Hospital Centers, part of the 44th Medical Brigade, staff the center for patient treatment. The 531st is from Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and the 9th from Fort Hood, Texas.

New York established a dual-status commander, New York Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Michel Natali, the New York National Guard’s Assistant Adjutant General, Army, to command both National Guard and active duty forces operating in the state.

The NYNG is also providing logistics support to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of New York City. Guardsmen will work with members of the Medical Examiner's Office to assist in the dignified removal of human remains when required.

New York National Guard images continue to go up on DVIDS: https://www.dvidshub.net/unit/NYNG, and our NY National Guard Flickr site, https://www.flickr.com/photos/nyng.

Please attribute to Col. Richard Goldenberg, New York Army National Guard Public Affairs Officer. He can also be reached at (518) 786-6150, or by email at richard.l.goldenberg.mil@mail.mil.

Ohio:
Ohio National Guard has 470 Soldiers and Airmen supporting 12 food banks across the state. In just six days, the following has been accomplished:

  • Packaged and distributed more than 1.5 million pounds of food
  • 20,000 meals picked up via drive-thru locations
  • 500 home deliveries
  • More than 200 deliveries to partner hubs
  • 88 counties served

Ohio National Guard images continue to go up on DVIDS:

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    West Virginia:
    Currently, nearly 370 members of the West Virginia National Guard are serving the state of West Virginia by augmenting civil authorities. Our logistical team has received 307,950 gloves; 27,416 gowns; 28,500 surgical masks; 71,920 N95 masks; 1,536 face shields and 300 coveralls from the national stockpile. The WVNG will facilitate the distribution of these supplies to healthcare facilities around the state tomorrow, alongside the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources and the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.

    The West Virginia National Guard is building a network of epidemiology analysts to assist their Department of Health and Human Resources with COVID-19 tracking and analytics. National Guard Civil Support teams have provided hands-on training to hundreds of first responders and hospital staff on Personal Protective Equipment.

    Four Guard personnel began work today to assist with traffic control at a drive through testing site in Huntington. The Guard will support additional testing sites as requests are vetted and approved through the State Emergency Operations Center in the coming days and weeks.

    All current and future missions performed by the WVNG are a part of a coordinated state-level public health preparation and response effort for the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak, initiated by Governor Jim Justice, and being led by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources.

    Please attribute to Maj. Holli Nelson, the West Virginia National Guard Public Affairs Officer. She may be reached at (304) 561-6762 (office), (740) 710-1745 (cell), or by email at holli.r.nelson.mil@mail.mil.

    Additional content, with high-resolution imagery can be accessed online at: https://www.dvidshub.net/units/wv-ang.

    Social media sites for WVNG can be accessed at: https://www.facebook.com/WV.nationalguard, https://www.twitter.com/WVNationalGuard, and https://www.instagram.com/wv_nationalguard.

    Wisconsin:
    Wisconsin National Guard planners and project managers are assisting Wisconsin Elections Commission to ensure the state can hold its upcoming election April 7.