48th Medical Group completes realignment
By Airman 1st Class Rhonda Smith, 48th Fighter Wing
/ Published June 26, 2020
ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England -- The 48th Medical Group recently completed a squadron reorganization to enhance its ability to proactively manage active duty medical care, improve personnel availability and rapidly restore deployment readiness and force lethality, becoming the first medical group in USAFE to do so.
The medical group followed the Air Force Medical Reform model by reducing its squadron numbers from six to five along with a Group Staff model.
“The biggest change is the separation of our active duty care and our non-active duty care,” said Col. Thomas Stamp, 48th MDG commander.
Under the Air Force Medical Reform model, dedicated provider care teams will align to an Operational Medical Readiness Squadron (OMRS), focused on proactively treating Total Force Airmen and improving their availability to support the warfighting mission.
Separate provider teams aligned to a Healthcare Operations Squadron (HCOS) will care for non-active duty patients, primarily families of service members and some retirees.
“These providers in the newly formed Adult Family Medicine Clinic (AFMC) were hand selected based on their clinical knowledge and ability to handle multiple disease states,” said Stamp. “When a patient has a face-to-face appointment with the AFMC specialized clinicians, they will be welcomed into a new building with a designated parking-lot, reducing the need to come into the main hospital.”
Within the pediatric clinic, patients will continue to be seen up until age 18, providing the continuity of care for those children.
The 48th Medical Group has also leveraged the increase and expansion of virtual visits, providing an opportunity to have a face-to-face visit from the comfort of the patient’s home.
“This expansion now includes many of our NHS partners, and has given further piece of mind to patients needing specialized care,” said Stamp. “Availability of patient care will remain the same as well as the priority for seeing patients.”
The changes will help shape the future of Air Force medicine and its ability to provide medically ready forces in support of operational requirements across all domains; increasing Airman availability, employability, and deployability. Locally, this reorganization ensures the 48th Fighter Wing is always ready to deliver combat airpower as U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa’s premiere fighter wing.