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Indiana Guard demonstrates IRT clinics to Slovak partners

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt. Jonathan Padish
  • 181st Intelligence Wing Public Affairs

Indiana Air National Guard Airmen hosted their Slovak Armed Forces Military Medical Command counterparts during an Innovative Readiness Training mission, June 7.

The visit was part of continuing interactions to enhance military relations between Indiana and its State Partnership Program partner, the Slovak Republic.

Through the SPP, the National Guard conducts military-to-military engagements to support defense security goals.

“Our partnership is nearly 30 years old,” said Air Force Capt. Nathaniel Lanaghan, the strategic plans officer for the Indiana Air National Guard. “It is very strong.”

VIDEO | 02:48 | IRT Hoosier Care - June 10 B-roll
IRT Hoosier Care - led by the 181st Intelligence Wing to offer free medical, dental, vision and other health care while providing training to service members - showcased to Slovak Armed Forces leaders the operational medical capabilities of active duty Air Force, Air National Guard and Army units.

“This has been a good opportunity for Slovak Military Medical Command to see our capabilities across the state while building our partnership and engaging in training,” said Lanaghan.

Air Force Lt. Col. Andrew Powell, the residency-trained flight surgeon and anesthesiologist for the 181st Medical Group, said missions like IRT Hoosier Care could be a template for medical training exercises with strategic partners.

Indeed, the possibility of future exercises is critical to strategic partnerships like the one between Indiana and the Slovak Republic.

“It’s all about networking,” said Powell. “It’s about building those one-on-one relationships.”

National Guard Soldiers and Airmen typically do not change duty locations and hold their positions longer than their active duty counterparts. That continuity of operations within National Guard units makes them well-positioned to further the SPP’s strategic relationships.

“Those relationships don’t just happen overnight,” said Powell. “You have to build that trust through a long-term, continuous relationship, and the Guard is uniquely situated to build those relationships because people tend to stay in the Guard for the long term.”

The 181st IW, located at Hulman Field Air National Guard Base in Terre Haute, supports the state and nation with globally integrated intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities and domestic operations like IRT Hoosier Care.