News: 74th EFS flight clinic offers valuable skill set
Story by Tech. Sgt. Rob Hazelett
BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan - He’s not your typical physician. Before Capt. Daniel Wagoner, 74th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron flight surgeon, took the plunge and tried his hand at the medical world, he was a former middle school art teacher, forensic autopsy technician and a touring musician.
“We take care of all DoD personnel on this side of the flight line, although we specialize in Aerospace Medicine involving fighter squadrons. We treat anything from minor scrapes, to also acting as first responders to medical emergencies,” Wagoner said. “As an osteopathic physician I also practice in musculoskeletal manipulation similar to chiropractics, which many other physicians do not offer here.”
Wagoner, along with his registered nurse Staff Sgt. Steven Etienne, 74th EFS independent duty medical technician, are both deployed from Moody Air Force Base, Ga.Their clinic is open seven-days-a-week and they see between 15-20 patients each day during their 15-hour shifts.
“We treat everything from common colds to chest pain,” Wagoner said. “We perform occupation safety inspections for shops, administer immunizations, council members dealing with deployment stress and even teach other medical shops about deployment medicine.”
Etienne, a Miami native, pointed out the clinic practices preventative medicine.
“I find that a lot of education and counseling has been the key to keep our maintainers on the line, and our pilots in the air,” said Etienne, a 13-year Air Force veteran. “I have been in the Air Force for quite some time and I have been a Squadron Medical Element for most of my career.
The World Famous Flying Tigers, 74th EFS, are the first fighter squadron to have an SME package in the area of responsibility that includes a flight surgeon teamed up with an RN,” Etienne said. “As much as I enjoy being an IDMT, my education as a nurse has elevated my skills in providing top-notch medical care to the 74th EFS. ”
Most patients may not understand the resources they have at their disposal here.
“This skill set is used to treat not only sports and work related injuries, but also through practiced technique, I can treat migraines, menstrual cramping, upset stomach, breathing issues and many aches and pains many health care providers normally use pharmaceuticals for; and with excellent results,” said Wagoner, who hails from Tampa Bay, Fla. “My primary mission is to maintain the health and safety of the A-10 pilots. However, I am required to fly as rated aircrew with many different airframes; functioning as a medical officer while in flight. This allows me to understand and grasp the environmental health risks in an aerospace environment.”
One of his other priorities is to fly on a regular basis with many squadrons, even Army companies in a wide range of air frames.
For as small as a clinic as they are, they see many different squadrons and shops.
“I don’t just see my A-10 pilots, but also aircraft maintenance squadron, civil engineer squadron, security forces, force protection, expeditionary operations group, etc., basically anyone with access to the flight line on this side of the base,” Wagoner said.
Date Posted:09.24.2013 07:55
Location:BAGRAM AIR FIELD, AF
Hometown:GLOBE, AZ, US
Hometown:MIAMI, FL, US
Hometown:MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, GA, US
Hometown:TAMPA, FL, US
Hometown:VALDOSTA, GA, US