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Air Force hones skills with emerging infectious diseases training

A team of U.S. Air Force members and biologists with the Gorgas Institute in Panama check a rodent trap in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The doctors were participating in an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event during Exercise New Horizons 2018, in which they received informational lectures from Panamanian infectious disease experts and conducted field studies of possible virus carrying wildlife and insects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A team of U.S. Air Force members and biologists with the Gorgas Institute in Panama check a rodent trap in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The doctors were participating in an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event during Exercise New Horizons 2018, in which they received informational lectures from Panamanian infectious disease experts and conducted field studies of possible virus carrying wildlife and insects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A team of U.S. Air Force members and biologists with the Gorgas Institute in Panama catch a monkey in a net after tranquilizing it in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The doctors were participating in an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event during Exercise New Horizons 2018, a joint training exercise where U.S. military members conduct training in civil engineer, medical, and support services while benefiting the local community. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A team of U.S. Air Force members and biologists with the Gorgas Institute in Panama catch a monkey in a net after tranquilizing it in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The doctors were participating in an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event during Exercise New Horizons 2018, a joint training exercise where U.S. military members conduct training in civil engineer, medical, and support services while benefiting the local community. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Kelly Gambino-Shirley, 346th Expeditionary Medical Operations Squadron public health officer, deployed from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, checks the vital signs of a monkey in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018, during an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event as part of Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Kelly Gambino-Shirley, 346th Expeditionary Medical Operations Squadron public health officer, deployed from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, checks the vital signs of a monkey in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018, during an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event as part of Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Kelly Gambino-Shirley (left), 346th Expeditionary Medical Operations Squadron public health officer, deployed from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, assists Dr. Blas Armien, a doctor with the Gorgas Institute, as they conduct medical tests on a monkey in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018, during an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event as part of Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Kelly Gambino-Shirley (left), 346th Expeditionary Medical Operations Squadron public health officer, deployed from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, assists Dr. Blas Armien, a doctor with the Gorgas Institute, as they conduct medical tests on a monkey in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018, during an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event as part of Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A bat is held by a biologist with the Gorgas Institute in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The bat was caught by doctors participating in an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event as part of Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A bat is held by a biologist with the Gorgas Institute in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The bat was caught by doctors participating in an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event as part of Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A monkey lays wrapped in a blanket after being tranquilized in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The monkey was tranquilized by U.S. Air Force doctors working with Panamanian counterparts as part of an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event during Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

A monkey lays wrapped in a blanket after being tranquilized in Meteti, Panama, June 6, 2018. The monkey was tranquilized by U.S. Air Force doctors working with Panamanian counterparts as part of an Emerging Infectious Diseases Training Event during Exercise New Horizons 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dustin Mullen)

FALLS CHURCH, Va. -- Exercise New Horizons 2018 is a joint military training exercise between the U.S. and Panama. During the exercise, U.S. Air Force doctors, public health specialists and other personnel collaborated with the Gorgas Institute at the University of Panama and the Panamanian Ministry of Health to conduct an emerging infectious disease training event.

Infectious disease control is vital to effective force health protection in many deployed environments. U.S. forces benefit from Panamanian experts’ familiarity with local diseases and real-world experience identifying and controlling infection and disease vectors.
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