(Left to Right) Lavina Anderson, Cpt. Carrie Lam, and Staff Sgt. Teena Kocsis) Army Nurse, Cpt. Carrie Lam of the 1984th U.S. Army Hospital coaches New Zealand Red Cross volunteer, Lavina Anderson how to gain an intravenous (IV) access on Licensed Practical Nurse, Staff Sgt. Teena Kocsis at the Samoa Red Cross Society in Apia, Samoa on Aug. 31, 2015. Photo Supplied
APIA, SAMOA: THURSDAY 03 SEPTEMBER 2015: The first wave of the 40-person medical team from the United States Army Reserve’s 9th Mission Support Command (MSC) arrived in Samoa over the weekend. The Reservists are here to augment Samoa’s medical capacity during the Commonwealth Youth Games. They have brought with them a cadre of specialized physicians, nurses, combat medics, bio-medical technicians and subject-matter experts.
This week the Reservists are helping Samoa prepare for the Games by conducting First Responder Training with Samoa Red Cross Volunteers and National Health Service staff.
Next week the US Army Reserve team will be working hand in hand with the National Health Services to provide direct medical support to all of the sporting venues and athlete villages.
During the week of September 14, the team will be placed at Faleolo, Poutasi, and Lufilufi district clinics as well as the Motootua hospital to provide direct care, including dental care, to patients and to share best practices with Samoa’s medical professionals. This includes a trip out to Manono Island that has been coordinated through the resident Peace Corps Volunteers.
The team also consists of behavioral health specialists who are working with the Samoa Victim Support Group and NHS Social Services Unit to share knowledge on a range of topics involving psychiatric care and counseling.
This is the second U.S. Army Reserve mission to Samoa in as many years, with members of the 1984th U.S. Army Hospital unit of the 9th MSC providing similar support during last year’s UN SIDS conference.
U.S. Army Reservists perform duties as soldiers one weekend every month and two weeks a year, while they maintain full-time professional careers outside of their U.S. Army Reserve service.