The U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity's Teri Glass and the Medical Support Systems team won the 2010 National Security and International Affairs Medal at the Service to America Medals awards gala Sep. 15 in Washington, D.C.
On behalf of the entire MSS team, the National Security and International Affairs Medal was accepted by Teri Glass, project manager for MSS; Steve Reichard, former project manager for MSS; Jaime Lee, product manager for non-medical systems; James Cromartie, management analyst; Mark Brown, chief of the Medical Prototype Development Laboratory; and Sharon Morgan, administrative assistant for MSS.
The MSS team was nominated for the National Security and International Affairs Medal in early 2010 by Col. Russell E. Coleman, commander of USAMMDA for their hard work and positive results in designing, managing and fielding casualty evacuation conversion kits for Mine Resistant Ambush protected vehicles, High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle and helicopters.
In May, the MSS team was named one of four finalists in the category.
"In my opinion, the work that MSS does has been absolutely critical to our military's mission in Iraq and Afghanistan," said Coleman. "Unfortunately, this work has not received the recognition it deserves until now."
Coleman praised the MSS team's daily work-ethic, will-power and determination expended to develop and deploy the CASEVAC kits that they know are urgently needed on the battlefield.
"The CASEVAC and medical evacuation capabilities that they have fielded have saved the lives of many of our deployed Servicemembers and is an accomplishment worthy of recognition," said Coleman.
The CASEVAC kits provide a wide-range of non-ambulatory military vehicles to rapidly convert to CASEVAC/MEDEVAC capable, allowing field medics to transport patients more safely and efficiently from the battlefield to treatment facilities.
"The conversion takes less than one minute to deploy and significantly decreases the amount of time to safely evacuate a casualty," said Lee.
The CASEVAC kits were developed by the MSS team to address the growing need to evacuate casualties from improved explosive devices and other battlefield situations. Ambulances were not always immediately available to evacuate casualties. Therefore, non-ambulatory vehicles needed to have CASEVAC options.
In addition to being able to convert a standard vehicle to a CASEVAC vehicle in under a minute, the kits supplied the vehicles with the Warrior Aid and Litter Kit, featuring the collapsible handle TALON litter, pressure dressings, combat application tourniquet and additional first responder items for far-forward medical care.
In 2008, MSS fielded more than 300 CASEVAC kits in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. Currently, thousands of CASEVAC kits and WALKs have been fielded on MRAPs. The MSS team continues its efforts to improve and supply CASEVAC kits in support of OIF and OEF.
According to Lee, the CASEVAC kit lead the Army Medical Department to work with the PM MRAP office to develop, design, produce and field a Category 1 and 2 MRAP Ambulance. With input from Directorate of Combat Doctrine Development, Lt. Col Bill Fuller and Master Sgt. Chris Reid, the AMEDD developed a unique MRAP Medical Equipment Set that was battle configured and arranged by critical care functions: air-way management, bleeding, O2 therapy, splinting, hypothermia, IV/IO administration and medication. This provided a battle- configured MES set that was ready for use, straight out of the box.
"Medic feedback was overwhelming in support of this new MES set which is now becoming the new standard for medical evacuation sets of the future," said Lee.
"While Teri and her team gain the most satisfaction from knowing that our products are saving lives every day, this award clearly demonstrates to the world that the Medical Support System Project Management Office specifically and USAMMDA in general are focused on delivering urgently needed medical products," said Coleman.
The Medical Support Systems team receiving the National Security and International Affairs Medal includes: Teri Glass, acting project manager of medical support systems; Steve Reichard; former project manager of medical support systems; Jaime Lee, product manager for non-medical systems; James Cromartie, management analyst; Mark Brown, chief of the Medical Prototype Development Laboratory; Murray Swanson, engineering technician (retired); John Cesca, engineering technician (retired), Julia Hanes, budget analyst (retired); Sharon Morgan, administrative assistant; Master Sgt. Christian Reid, combat developer (retired); and Lt. Col. William Fuller, combat developer (retired).