NEWS | April 26, 2018

Joint medical expo fosters skills, camaraderie

By Airman 1st Class Joshua R. Maund Joint Base Charleston Pubblic Affairs

The 5th annual Joint Skills Fair was held at the Naval Health Clinic Charleston on Joint Base Charleston, S.C. April, 18, 2018.

The event included multiple medical demonstrations by both the Air Force and Navy which provided complementary training for both branches. The capstone of the expo was a Medical Skills Olympics where Airmen and Sailors utilized the skills they learned throughout their careers while traversing an obstacle course.

“The Joint Skills Expo serves as a refresher to our Airmen and Sailors,” said U.S. Navy Lt. Jonathan Carmack, NHCC department head of staff education and training. “It is also an opportunity to expand our network of communication and is an opportunity to strengthen the skills of the service members while state-side and overseas. I think both branches complement each other extremely well which only strengthens the medical fascets of the total force.”

The medical demonstration stations included training in skills such as equipment demonstrations, intubation and airway management, emergency medical response procedures, electrocardiography drills and medical waste disposal. The stations were headed by seasoned medical professionals allowing junior service members a stress and risk free way to apply the knowledge that they gained.

“I think the event and competition, the Air Force versus the Navy, was great because it really shows how competitive the teams from both services are," said Lt. Col. Christine Smetana, 628th Medical Operations Squadron commander.

Members of NHCC, 628th Medical Group and Naval Hospital Beaufort hosted various demonstrations and competed in teams during the Olympics event. The NHCC team won the event, defeating the two-time defending champs, the 628th MDG.

“This year’s Olympic event was fantastic,” said Carmack. “For the last two years the Air force has won the event, but this year, the Navy was able to take home the trophy!”

Events such as this one play a strong role strengthening communication between branches of the DoD and assimilating the service members to the cultural nuances between them.

“The Expo and Olympic event were a great way to keep us, as medical professionals, on our toes,” said Seaman Mackenzie Munger, NHCC hospital corpsman. “The Joint factor really gives us a unique look into how other branches and units operate. The diversity helps us discover the most efficient method of training for our Airmen and Sailors.”