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Soldiers Give New Orleans Citizens Medical Attention

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

NEW ORLEANS, Sept. 20, 2005 – Military medical specialists who often are airborne have been getting down to earth over the past week to attend to the medical needs of New Orleans residents who'd survived Hurricane Katrina.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
Thomas Lambert, left, arrives at the 82nd Airborne Division-operated field medical tent at the local medical center in Algiers, a New Orleans neighborhood, to pick up a prescription Sept. 19. Army Pfc. John C. Bennett, a licensed practical nurse attached to the 82nd Airborne Division's Company C, 782nd Main Support Battalion, comes forward to assist Lambert. Photo by Gerry J. Gilmore

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

Army Capt. Tim J. Phillips, a physician assistant assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division's 2nd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, said Sept. 19 that his soldiers have been issuing tetanus and hepatitis A immunizations, filling prescriptions, and treating various illnesses at the field medical tent set up in the parking lot of the Algiers Medical Center.

Phillips described his and his medics' efforts here as "very important work" that's helping a community in need. An average of 300 people daily had received medical service over the previous four days at the medical center site and at another temporary facility at a local high school, he noted.

The Algiers medical center could soon reopen, and "in that case, we would tear down our operations and move to another facility in the community that needs us," Phillips said.

Neighborhood resident Thomas Lambert, who came to Phillip's clinic Sept. 19 to pick up a prescription, said he was impressed by the "tremendous" service provided by the Army medical technicians.

"It's just beyond me" that the Army medics "could do things so fast," Lambert said.

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Related Sites:
2nd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment
Military Support in the Wake of Hurricane Katrina

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