Med group squadrons begin new chapters after redesignation
By John Ingle, 82nd Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published August 27, 2019
SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- A new chapter began for two 82nd Medical Group units here Aug. 26, 2019, when the 82nd Aerospace Medicine and 82nd Medical Operation squadrons were redesignated as part of the most rapid and systemic transformation of the Air Force Medical Service in its 70-year history.
The 82nd AMDS has been redesignated as the 82nd Operation Medical Readiness Squadron, and the 82nd MDOS is now the 82nd Health Care Operations Squadron.
Under the Air Force-wide changes that are rolling out, the 82nd OMRS will focus on the warfighter by proactively treating active-duty Airmen and improving their ability to support the mission. The 82nd HCOS will continue to provide quality care to its dependent and retiree populations.
82nd MDG Commander Col. Kevin McCal, who officiated the ceremony, said while the structural make-up of the squadrons will be slightly different under the new designations, the foundation created by the units that came before them will still be there as they begin this new chapter of healthcare on Sheppard.
“In the end, what people will get in service is the same service they got prior to these names changing,” he said. “Again, top-notch, high-quality, premier care. Our focus is always on those who come through these doors. That’s what we do.”
During the redesignation ceremony, Lt. Col. Elisha Parkhill, 82nd OMRS commander, cased the guidon of the 82nd AMDS, signaling the end of the squadron, and unfurled that of the 82nd OMRS to mark its beginning. Lt. Col. Scott Jensen, 82nd HCOS commander, did the same as the squadron transitions from the 82nd MDOS to the new designation.
Air Force Surgeon General Lt. Gen. Dorothy Hogg said in an Aug. 12, 2019, transformation update that’s spanning the entire AFMS will affect medics and patients alike, although in different ways.
“Making these changes and getting them right is not an easy process,” she said. “It requires deliberate decision-making and feedback from our medics so we can adjust course when needed.”
As such, the alignment of clinics will be different and the transition continues.
McCal said the bottom line is the 82nd MDG will continue to meet its mission and vision, which is to provide mission-focused, safe and reliable healthcare.