Army Medical Logistics Recognized with Wolf Pack Award
Army Surgeon General Lt. Gen. Nadja Y. West and Army Medical Department Civilian Corps Chief Gregg Stevens presented the 2016 4th quarter Army Medicine Wolf Pack award to the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command's Total Lifecycle Management Team during a ceremony at Fort Detrick, Maryland, Oct. 11.
The Wolf Pack award recognizes an integrated team of military and civilian members whose accomplishments demonstrate excellence and effective teamwork resulting in significant products or services with the potential for broad impact in support of Army Medicine. The Total Lifecycle Management team was comprised of 20 military and civilian employees from the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency and the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity, both subordinate organizations of the USAMRMC.
This quarter's Wolf Pack award recognized the team's combined efforts to efficiently and effectively equip and sustain the Army, ensuring a medically ready and a ready medical force. In 2015, the USAMMA appointed an accountable officer and supply specialists at each of its stateside medical maintenance depots to ensure an accurate record of property, documents and funds for each of the depots, which total $125 million in medical equipment. The USAMMA then completed a 100 percent inventory at all of its medical depots, coordinating with the USAMMA's Business Support Office to leverage a barcode system that allows for a valid enterprise-wide system of record using the Theater Enterprise Wide Logistics System. TEWLS is an information technology system within the Defense Medical Logistics - Enterprise Solution portfolio that consolidates numerous military logistics functions into a single application and database. This process allowed the USAMMA to optimize its existing inventory - rather than additional funding - to field to the force approximately $29 million worth of life-saving medical equipment in fiscal year 2016.
Stevens spoke to the crowd, reminiscing about his time assigned to the USAMMA as an active-duty Army logistician. He said, "It is really neat to see the USAMMA get this award because I grew up as a 'loggy.' It is fun to watch loggies do good stuff - and I know you have been doing good stuff all along - but it is fun to see it rewarded."
The USAMMA operations comprise 19 locations worldwide, including three stateside depots that serve as distinct Centers of Excellence located in Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania; Hill Air Force Base, Utah; and San Joaquin, California. Besides testing, calibrating and conducting depot-level maintenance, each location also refurbishes and modernizes medical equipment and devices so they can go back out to the field for use. The USAMMA's depots recapitalized more than 2,000 medical equipment items last year, saving the Army $13.2 million when comparing the costs to replace this medical materiel instead of recapitalizing it.
As a result of these efficiencies, the USAMMA was able to field or modernize more than 140 Army units in fiscal year 2016 - twice as much as programmed--while expending the same amount of resources.
The USAMMA also centrally manages Army Prepositioned Sustainment stock at various locations. Prepositioned materiel ensures that Warfighters get the resources they need early in a contingency environment when the operation is at its greatest risk. Previously, information technology limitations allowed the Theater Lead Agent for Medical Materiel to view only what is in their stock and not the materiel in the USAMMA's APS. In some cases, these stocks are located in side-by-side warehouses. Yet, in order for the TLAMM to view and use the USAMMA APS, materiel had to be manually transferred into the TLAMM system - a process that took up to a week, delaying the length of time it took to field life-saving materiel to the Warfighter. Leveraging TEWLS, the USAMMA developed an automated capability that allows the TLAMM, during a contingency, to view its own stocks as well as the USAMMA APS, and leverage the necessary stock. This process significantly reduces patient/casualty risk during contingency operations by saving time--hours versus days--and ensuring Soldiers have the materiel they need when they need it.
Addressing the crowd and speaking on behalf of the team, Director of the USAMMA Force Projection Directorate Linda Foltz said, "I just want to thank everyone who is on the team and the other folks at the USAMMA for this award because without everyone, we would not be here. The improvements that we have made we will continue to utilize throughout all of our programs."
The Wolf Pack award also recognized the joint efforts of the USAMMA and the USAMMDA, which teamed up to use some of the cost savings from other initiatives to procure air-supported shelters (i.e., "airbeams") to begin replacing existing medical tents in the field. A 2014 study conducted by the U.S. Army Natick Soldier RD&E Center demonstrated that 54 percent of tested TEMPER lots--many of which had far exceeded their originally designed lifespan--no longer met fire resistance requirements. Additionally, these old tents were heavy and difficult to set up. The new air-supported shelters are 50 percent lighter than the old tents, saving units 17 tons for each 148-bed field hospital and can be set up by four Soldiers in 15-30 minutes, compared to older medical tents that can take more than an hour to set up. The new shelters also have a longer operational lifespan that the older tents, which will ultimately cost the Army less in long-term maintenance and replacement costs.
"You've all seen the picture...of the Soldier being taken care of at the point-of-injury and I say that if we don't get that right, it really doesn't matter what else we do get right...And we won't get that right unless every member of our team is contributing fully at 100 percent, and you guys went way over the top of that," added West. "So I hope you see yourselves (involved) in that Soldier getting care on the ground far forward because what you do every day supports that (mission)."