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    Florida/Texas Guard partnership reinforces efforts to fight COVID-19

    Florida/Texas Guard partnership reinforces efforts to fight COVID-19

    Photo By Sgt. 1st Class Shane Klestinski | Sgt. 1st Class Robert Harris (foreground, right) injects Army Pfc. Sebastian Diaz...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. 1st Class Shane Klestinski 

    50th Regional Support Group

    Soldiers of the Florida Guard’s 50th Regional Support Group (RSG) completed two tasks to fight the spread of COVID-19 at Fort Hood, Texas, on Feb. 5, 2021.

    First, Soldiers from the 7406th Troop Medical Clinic, an Army Reserve unit based in Columbia, Missouri, administered the 50th RSG’s second COVID nasal test since the 50th RSG arrived to Fort Hood for pre-mobilization training before deploying to Poland; the entire unit tested negative. Later that day, about 40 of those Soldiers would receive their second injection of the Moderna COVID vaccine – and some got their first injections – thanks to coordination with the Texas Army Guard.

    “With Fort Hood being a large power projection platform and Texas Army Guard medical assets nearby, we were able to come help get the 50th vaccinated pretty quickly,” said Sgt. 1st Class Robert Harris, medical mobilization noncommissioned officer-in-charge assigned to the Joint Surgeon’s Office of the Texas Army Guard.

    National Guard units from various states partnering to tackle a common mission is nothing new. The Florida Guard has years of experience conducting disaster response missions during hurricane season in the Sunshine State, and on more than one occasion, has partnered with Army Guard units from other states, such as Wisconsin and New Jersey during Hurricane Irma in 2017.

    “These vaccinations have certainly helped build the relationship between the Texas and Florida National Guards,” said Army Maj. Jacqueline Zuluaga, a health plans training intelligence security officer assigned to the 50th RSG. “Texas stepped up to the plate and supported us, knowing that we’re a deploying unit. It was a collaboration that really speaks to how the National Guard, whether it’s your home state or another state, tends to cross bridges to solidify relationships.”

    Partnering missions not only give Soldiers experience in working outside their own organization, but getting that practice increases a unit’s interoperability, which improves their readiness in handling future operations.

    “Our mission in Poland will rely heavily on NATO and other partnerships on an international level,” said Army Col. Ricardo Roig, 50th RSG commander. “The more diversity of experience we can get in partnering and coordinating with people outside of our own unit, the more effective we’ll be in our mission overseas.”




    Date Taken: 02.05.2021
    Date Posted: 02.23.2021 03:03
    Story ID: 389510
    Location: FORT HOOD, TX, US 

    Web Views: 38
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