Forward Progress Builds Emergency Medical Readiness

Col. Koji Nishimura, commander, 30th Medical Command, climbs behind the wheel to start the engine of a 212th Combat Support Hospital Light Medium Tactical Vehicle during his visit to Operation Forward Progress, April 26, in the motor pool in Miesau, Germany. Operation Forward Progress was a two-week training exercise to improve medical logistics and readiness for a rapidly deployable, theater-enabling medical capability in Europe.

MIESAU, Germany -- Soldiers of the 212th Combat Support Hospital trained medical logistics to improve their ability to deploy within hours of notification during Operation Forward Progress April 19 -- May 3, in Miesau, Germany.

"We're focusing on the mobility of the unit and their ability to conduct an Emergency Deployment Readiness Exercise," said Col. Ann Sammartino, commander, 212th Combat Support Hospital.

Just days after assuming command of 30th Medical Command -- the higher headquarters of the 212th CSH -- Col. Koji Nishimura, along with Command Sgt. Maj. Alexis King, visited Miesau. He met the Soldiers, toured the facilities, climbed into the vehicles, and witnessed the work of Operation Forward Progress as part of his introduction to the unit.

"The 212th CSH Team is creating the environment for Soldiers and Families to take care of each other, do the right thing, and strive for world-record performance -- our command philosophy for innovation and discipline in the future," said Nishimura.

The head nurse of the Intermediate Care Ward, Capt. Laurette Mangan, walked the commander and command sergeant major through the unit warehouse. She explained how each section developed electronic inventory lists and vehicle load plans for all of the hospital's supplies and equipment, pointing to aisles filled with color-coded containers perfectly lined up on shelves in cages for each section of the hospital.

"When there is a product that is going to expire soon, we have records of that on the computer. We now know exactly which box it is located in, in order to replace it," said Mangan.

"I am very proud of the Soldiers, NCOs and Officers that all went above and beyond my expectations during this exercise and truly set the standard of world-record performance," said Sammartino.

The 30th MEDCOM, headquartered in Heidelberg, Germany, is the enabling medical command asset for the European Command theater of operations. Its Soldiers provide medical support for combat, humanitarian assistance and training missions for U.S. European Command, U.S. Army Europe, U.S. Africa Command, U.S. Central Command, and Operations New Dawn and Enduring Freedom and Kosovo Force.

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