AGANA HEIGHTS, Guam (NNS) -- Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho, the 43rd Surgeon General and Commanding General of the U.S. Army Medical Command, visited U.S. Naval Hospital (USNH) Guam Feb. 14, during her trip throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
The purpose of her trip is to support the Department of Defense's goals to strengthen alliances and partnerships, and maintain an assured presence in the region. Horoho also spent time understanding the health system throughout the region in order to help improve on capabilities with partner nations and military health care as a whole.
During her visit to the hospital, Horoho met with top leadership to discuss the connection between joint efforts in military medicine and force readiness. "Throughout military medicine there are things that will need to remain unique to each branch, but there are also things being done that can be standardized. There is an opportunity to eliminate some variances and facilitate discussions that can better streamline our standards of care," she said.
Horoho talked with her Navy Medicine colleagues about some of the ways the Army is working to improve the health and readiness of the Army Family as a whole. Known as the "Ready and Resilient Campaign", the Army is working to shift to a culture where Soldiers optimize their own health in order to improve their performance and resiliency. Congruently, both the Navy's Chief of Naval Operations and Surgeon General envision a force that maintains optimal medical and dental standards, with Navy Medicine's top three priorities being: readiness, value, and jointness.
Keeping forces ready in a joint environment is not a new concept to most military medical professionals because it is something many of them do in combat situations, as well as within garrison-based care systems in the states that operate as integrated systems. Now, with the adoption of the new governance model for the Military Health System, these successes are being expanded into some of the military's major hospitals that serve as key readiness platforms.
The significance to military medicine will be improved integration and efficiency establishing common clinical and business processes, to name a few. More importantly, skills required of medical professionals during wartime will continue to be built at home through the ability to practice and maintain technical proficiencies, through the care of Department of Defense beneficiaries.
As the military rebalances some of its forces to the Pacific, it will be very important to ensure its forces are fit and ready. USNH Guam provides healthcare services to approximately 26,000 DoD, Veterans Affairs and Federal civilian beneficiaries each year accounting for 139,000 outpatient visits and 2,050 admissions.
Horoho also received a tour of USNH Guam's replacement hospital, which is being built because the current hospital design is no longer optimized for the mix of inpatient and outpatient services required by the present and projected patient population. The replacement hospital will incorporate advances in healthcare delivery, including improved patient life safety and increased efficiency in hospital operations. The hospital will continue to meet the full spectrum of patient and family centered medical and surgical care for all eligible beneficiaries throughout its lifespan.
"The hospital is beautiful," said Horoho. "I like that they implemented a healing environment. This will be an important resource for those on island as well as the influx of Marines that will eventually arrive on island."
For more news from U.S. Naval Hospital Guam, visit www.navy.mil/local/NHG Admin/.