SOTO CANO AIR BASE, Honduras –
After months of training, members of Joint Task Force-Bravo sling-loaded a 4,823 pound self containment system to one of 1-228 Aviation Battalion's Chinook-47s, which will be used by JTF-Bravo's Medical Element's mobile surgical team Sept 16-21 in the Northern region of Honduras.
"The environmental control unit is a trailer mounted support system," said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Tim Byrnes, Army Forces Air Drop supervisor. "Basically, this mobile device is a mobile building as it consists of a generator, air conditioner and a tent."
The post conducts MSTs to enhance relations through medical assistance with regional and local civilian organizations while supporting the Ministry of Health's efforts to provide medical care to the population.
During the last two months, JTF-Bravo personnel have sling-loaded more than 35 times to practice for real world events. One of the items sling loaded was a pre-expeditionary assistance kit and trailer, which weighed more than five tons.
"The MST mission will partner our surgical team with a Honduran surgical team," said U.S. Army Lt. Col. (M.D.) Huy Luu, the MEDEL commander. "Our surgeons will be busy as they will average three to five surgeries per day. The surgeries will be conducted inside of our deployable rapid assembly shelter (DRASH tent), which not only helps alleviate medical issues from the Honduran patients, but allows our service members to be field ready."
The United States military personnel assigned to Joint Task Force-Bravo have been conducting medical readiness training exercises since Oct. 1993. Since that time, they have conducted more than 295 missions and treated more than 341,400 medical patients, 67,400 dental patients and 14,300 surgical patients throughout Central America.