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    Army, Navy and Air Force dentists gather for professional development

    Army, Navy and Air Force Dentists Gather for Professional Development

    Photo By Douglas Stutz | Capt. David K. Weiss, commander of Naval Hospital Bremerton, welcomes dental officers...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    Regional Health Command - Pacific

    By Carrie Petershagen
    Puget Sound Military Health System

    BREMERTON, Wash.—More than 60 active-duty dental officers gathered Feb. 2 at Naval Hospital Bremerton to attend to the first dental leadership symposium sponsored by the Puget Sound Military Health System. Attendees represented Madigan Army Medical Center, Naval Hospitals Bremerton and Oak Harbor, and the Air Force’s 62nd Medical Squadron.

    “The goals for the symposium are to help attendees develop as military officers and for their role as dental providers within the Military Health System,” said event planner, Lt. Cmdr. Kirt C. Nilsson, clinic operations with the Puget Sound MHS.

    The group heard from Capt. David H. Hartzell, chairman for the Navy Comprehensive Dentistry Program and former Navy Dental Corps career planner. He encouraged officers to stay active in their training, and credits the integration of Navy dental and medical commands for allowing dentists to branch out into other areas of health care.

    “The opportunity to branch out and be in the broader picture with Military Medicine bodes well for you,” Hartzell advised.

    The attendees also heard leadership insights from Col. Shan Bagby, commander of Joint Base Lewis-McChord Dental Activity. He advised attendees to not base career decisions on positions and titles, but rather to focus on what is right for them and to identify what they are not willing to compromise.

    “The best leaders are the ones who learn to embrace ambiguity,” Bagby said. He also emphasized the importance of “finding mentors who are not like you, as they will offer you a different perspective.”

    Other topics covered officer record management, Dental Corps roadmap, and an opportunity to seek individual mentoring sessions with senior leaders.

    The symposium is the result of the newly formed Dental Consortium within Puget Sound MHS. The Consortium is working toward minimizing what is spent on care performed outside of our medical treatment facilities, and maximizing the care provided within the Military Health System. One example is the recent departure of the periodontist at Naval Hospital Oak Harbor. Through the early work by consortium members, the Army identified a way to fill this gap in service and is now sending an Army periodontist to Oak Harbor.

    “As we all work together, we are able to maximize the capabilities of each clinic and minimize the amount we spend outside our system,” Nilsson said.

    About Puget Sound MHS
    Established in 2013, the Puget Sound MHS is an integrated medical market consisting of Army, Navy and Air Force medical treatment facilities that provide care to over 288,500 local TRICARE beneficiaries. Working together across service lines ensures Service Members, Retirees and Families receive timely access to high-quality health care. To facilitate this process, the Puget Sound MHS developed seven medical consortiums led and attended by representatives from Madigan Army Medical Center and Naval Hospitals Bremerton and Oak Harbor, to further improve productivity and reduce purchased care in civilian health care facilities.

    Follow Puget Sound MHS on Facebook at and on Twitter at for the latest information and updates.



    Date Taken: 02.02.2017
    Date Posted: 02.08.2017 18:24
    Story ID: 222968
    Location: BREMERTON, WA, US 

    Web Views: 555
    Downloads: 0