Army dental assistants perform in operation arctic care.The versatility of our United States Army United States Army
Major branch of the U.S. military forces, charged with preserving peace and security and defending the nation. The first regular U.S. fighting force, the Continental Army, was organized by the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, to supplement local Dental Assistants was once again displayed during Operation Arctic Care 2005 held in the frozen tundra of the Alaskan peninsula from March 19th to April 1st. This major exercise is designed as a unique medical/dental training opportunity for members of the military while at the same time providing hard to get care to native Indians throughout the peninsula. Operation Arctic Care is an annual multiservice readiness exercise that offers training in moving Army, Navy, Air Force, Reserve, Guard, U.S. Public Health Service and native health personnel and their equipment/materials to remote locations in providing health care under realistic conditions. The locations served this year were the Kodiak Area Native Association and the Tanana Chiefs Conference Tanana Chiefs Conference, (TCC) the traditional tribal consortium of the 42 villages of Interior Alaska, is based on a belief in tribal self-determination and the need for regional Native unity. villages of Ouzinkie, Port Lions, Larsen Bay, Karluk, Akhiok, Old Harbor Hughes, Huslia, Ruby Kaltag, and Nulato. These often remote and isolated villages provide a huge challenge logistically as many of the areas can only be approached by air or sea. Austere conditions such as high winds, heavy snow, rain and fog also added to the challenges of moving personnel and equipment to the villages for the rendering of medical/dental care. Through it all, seven soldier dental assistants from the Western Regional Dental Command based out of Fort Wainwright Fort Wainwright is a United States Army post adjacent to Fairbanks in the U.S. state of Alaska. It is part of the Fairbanks, Alaska Metropolitan Statistical Area.
It was established in 1961 when the former United States Air Force base, Ladd Field, was transferred to the (Fairbanks, Alaska Fairbanks (IPA: /ˈfɛərbæŋks/) is a Home Rule City in Fairbanks North Star Borough, Alaska, United States. ) and Fort Richardson
Fort Richardson is a United States Army installation in the U.S. state of Alaska, adjacent to the city of Anchorage. (Anchorage, Alaska) weathered the storms and barriers in ultimately working side by side with dental officers from different services in performing dental care to a combined total of 1,477 native Indians. "I think it is worthwhile for other military people to do the exercise and get something good out of it: Helping others," said Army Sergeant Victoria Haines. "You don't have to go to another country to help other people. We can be in our own backyard and help others." The Army dental assistant's participation in this real world scenario and the experiences they each gained are irreplaceable.
It all began with the issuing of cold weather gear and equipment for safety and survival reasons followed by classes on the procedures on how to properly wear the gear. Normally accustomed to working in a fixed facility with access to their supplies and equipment readily available, these dental assistants packed their dental equipment and personal gear and proceeded to the transportation site. From there, they were airlifted to the different villages by CH-47 Chinook Chinook, indigenous people of North America
Chinook (shĭnk`, chĭ–), Native American tribe of the Penutian linguistic stock. helicopter and C-130 aircraft. Upon reaching the villages transportation became by foot. There the adversities began. Several villages had power outages. In the village of Galena galena (gəlē`nə) or lead glance, lustrous, blue-gray mineral crystallizing usually in cubes, sometimes in octahedrons. It is the most important ore and the principal source of lead. , a roof collapsed on a building where the Arctic Care personnel were conducting the area of operations An operational area defined by the joint force commander for land and naval forces. Areas of operation do not typically encompass the entire operational area of the joint force commander, but should be large enough for component commanders to accomplish their missions and protect their . Fortunately, no one was seriously injured. Potable potable /pot·a·ble/ (po´tah-b'l) fit to drink.
Fit to drink; drinkable.
fit to drink. water (drinkable water) was not available at some of the sites. This created a logistical nightmare as water had to be purchased and transported in. Winds reached up to 75 miles an hour. Each soldier's physical fitness was tested as they moved several cases of heavy equipment up and down stairs and over long distances. Through all these challenges, our dental assistants adapted and continued on with their mission ensuring patient care was rendered to all patients possible. "The Arctic Care mission was a wonderful experience. It was a great opportunity to work with other branches of service," stated Army Specialist Kimberly Frost. "The training I received from actually using the field equipment in an actual situation was great. Many 91Es are deploying today in support of Iraqi Freedom and I think these kinds of activities can have a great impact on the performance of that soldier when he/she has to be in a combat zone treating patients, but at the same time being under the stress of being in a theater of war Noun 1. theater of war - the entire land, sea, and air area that may become or is directly involved in war operations
theatre of war
field of operations, theater of operations, theatre of operations, theatre, theater, field - a region in which active ," said Army Specialist Marvin Nevarez.
Next year, Operation Arctic Care will continue the tradition that began in 1996 of providing patient care to the natives and in 2006 will serve the Norton Sound Health Corporation villages. Once again our dental assistants will proudly represent our United States Army and the American Dental Assistants Association in providing service to the natives of Alaska.
Western Regional Dental Command, Sergeant Major SGM SGM
sergeant major Richard Orona