OSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea --
Operating while in a chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) threat environment poses unique challenges for medical personnel. Airmen have to contend with being able to provide emergency care to casualties safely and efficiently, while keeping themselves and their patients protected from the hazardous environments a CBRN attack can create.
As part of a Pacific Air Forces initiative, 51st Medical Group installation medical all hazard response (IMAHR) teams were trained on the deployment and operation of the Tent Kit 2 (TK2) expeditionary medical support shelter system. Instructors, visiting from the 354th Medical Group, Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, guided Osan medics through set-up and tear-down procedures during a week-long training event.
“Instead of sending several members stateside to receive this training, it’s more effective to bring two instructors here,” said U.S. Air Force 1st Lt. Torris Brown, 51st Medical Support Squadron medical readiness flight commander. “It’s important for our medics to receive these trainings to support the ‘Fight Tonight’ mission of Osan.”
The modular TK2 system is used as an add-on to shelters currently in use in military operations worldwide. According to U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Jeffrey Shaffer, 354th Healthcare Operations Squadron warrior medicine flight chief, the compact design offers many advantages to personnel in hazardous environments.
“The kit can be shipped together on a single pallet and set up as a preventative measure, so in the event of a CBRN attack, personnel can operate as normal,” said Shaffer.
Utilizing an airlock system, the TK2 creates an over-pressurized environment that protects from CBRN agents outside of the contained area within the tent. This allows personnel to operate without requiring mission oriented protective posture (MOPP) gear while inside, permitting greater freedom of movement and unfettered communication within the shelter.
“It’s been a good learning experience,” said Tech. Sgt. Samuel Hernandez, 51st Medical Support Squadron (MDSS) logistics operations section chief. “This training is definitely going to enhance our medical readiness capabilities at Osan and it has really brought the team together.”