NEWS | Nov. 12, 2013

Joint Task Force-Bravo's Mobile Surgical Team provides trauma care in Honduras

By U.S. Army Sgt. Courtney Kreft Joint Task Force-Bravo Medical Element

Joint Task Force-Bravo's Mobile Surgical Team (MST) completed four surgeries and consulted in three cases at Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa, Honduras during a Medical Readiness Training Exercise (MEDRETE), November 4-6.

"This was a great opportunity for our team and gave us a chance to see things that are more emergent in an environment where the patients brought in are more critical," said U.S. Army Capt. Lynda Moser, the operating room nurse officer-in-charge. "The cases we saw were unique and more life and death situations, which gives us valuable experience if we were to ever to deploy to a combat zone and also gives us an opportunity to see more rare cases."

The MST completed four surgeries to include two gunshot wounds, one of which was to the chest, a gall bladder removal and a ruptured appendix. The three cases consulted included a bowel obstruction, abdominal bruising, and the repair of a brachial artery. JTF-Bravo's training readiness supports Honduran medical capabilities and strengthens the relationship with its partner nation.

"The previous MST did several of these small MEDRETEs in Tegucigalpa, but we had had to suspend them until recently. We are very fortunate to be able to continue with them," said U.S. Army Sgt. Anthony Rojas, the operating room technician noncommissioned-officer-in-charge. "These MEDRETEs are more fast-paced and give us valuable experience on emergency procedures."

Joint Task Force-Bravo's MST performs weekly surgeries in Comayagua and works on a regular basis to support U.S. Southern Command's humanitarian and disaster relief programs in order to strengthen the civil-military cooperation between the United States and nations in the region. This is done in coordination with the Offices of Security Cooperation and Department of Health officials in all seven Central American countries.