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    Medics keeps RNC support teams safe from COVID-19

    NC Guard Medic keeps RNC support teams safe from COVID-19

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Leticia Samuels | Spc. Ashley Altum, a behavioral health specialist assigned to the Headquarters and...... read more read more

    NC, UNITED STATES

    08.24.2020

    Story by Staff Sgt. Mary Junell 

    382nd Public Affairs Detachment

    Joint Task Force – Republic National Convention (JTF-RNC) came together in Charlotte, North Carolina Aug. 21-24, 2020 amidst a global pandemic to ensure the safety of citizens, delegates and critical infrastructure during the RNC event.

    However, with the spread of COVID-19 a concern, JTF-RNC medical staff’s priority was to develop and implement a plan to keep joint forces – consisting of North Carolina National Guardsman, Active Duty Soldiers, Marines, Airmen, and Department of Defense civilians, safe.

    Staff Sgt. Stacy Tindle, the medical non-commissioned officer in charge for the 130th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade (MEB), had a primary responsibility to ensure the medical welfare of all the joint forces within the joint operations area – preventing the spread of COVID-19. Every person who entered the North Carolina National Guard Armory in Charlotte was required to wear a mask and advised to maintain 6ft of separation whenever possible. They were also greeted with a list of questions – asking about possible contact with COVID-19 positive patients, signs symptoms that could be associated with COVID-19 and if personnel had a temperature within the last 24 hours.

    “We check temperatures of every personnel coming inside the building,” Tindle said. “We also provide medical support throughout the day whenever there’s a need.”

    JTF-RNC participants were given a sticker with the color of the day to wear – indicating they went through a preliminary medical screening. If a person had a temperature or answered yes to any of the questions, they were not allowed to enter the building and required further medical attention.

    The medical team, including Capt. Joseph Mintz, a physician assistant with the 130th MEB, prepared for months to make sure they were ready to keep JTF-RNC safe during the event.

    “We had a few drills where we had personnel here when we were doing these screenings and mask-wearing procedures,” Mintz said. “We collaborated with other sections to make sure we had enough cleaning supplies and surfaces were being sanitized. We had [time] to get that system set up so it was already in place by the time we got to here.”

    Even though the Republican National Convention was downsized due to the pandemic, the event still brought support teams from across the country, a concern for the medical team. Teams of medical personnel, physicians, nurses and medics went around the state to ensure everyone involved was complying with the CDC guidelines.

    “A huge number of [people] have come from all over the state, as well as Washington D. C. to support the Republican National Convention,” Tindle said. “This has been a huge undertaking. We’ve all been really excited about it, and it’s just been a great honor, but the number of personnel is key because we want to make sure [everyone is] safe at all times.”

    Although the RNC was a large event bringing together military service members and Department of Defense civilians from across the country, the JTF-RNC medical team had the same priority they always do – health and safety.

    “Our overall mission didn’t really change much for the RNC,” Mintz said. “Our primary mission is always safety and health; that’s always our top priority no matter what’s going on.”

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 08.24.2020
    Date Posted: 08.26.2020 16:22
    Story ID: 376861
    Location: NC, US

    Web Views: 78
    Downloads: 0

    PUBLIC DOMAIN