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7th Medical Group holds redesignation ceremony

7th Medical Group holds redesignation ceremony

Col. Jeffrey Cook, 7th Medical Group commander, left, and Lt. Col. Marion Foreman, 7th Health Care Operations Squadron commander, right, unfurl the new 7th HCOS guidons during a redesignation ceremony at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, Aug. 23, 2019. The ceremony marked the formal transition to the new medical group lined out by the Air Force Medical Service. Care for dependents and retirees will be handled by providers within the 7th HCOS. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. David Owsianka)

7th Medical Group holds redesignation ceremony

Col. Jeffrey Cook, 7th Medical Group commander, left, and Lt. Col. Stephanie Watkins Nance, 7th Operational Medical Readiness Squadron commander, take off the cover of the new 7th OMRS guidons during a redesignation ceremony at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, Aug. 23, 2019. The ceremony marked the formal transition to the new medical group lined out by the Air Force Medical Service. Under the new changes, dedicated provider care teams will be aligned to the 7th OMRS, primarily focused on proactively treating active-duty Airmen and improving their ability to support the mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. David Owsianka)

Dyess Air Force Base, Texas -- The Air Force’s Medical Reform model has arrived at Dyess Air Force Base and has brought changes to squadrons within the 7th Medical Group. The 7th Aerospace Medicine Squadron is redesignated as the 7th Operational Medical Readiness Squadron and the 7th Medical Operation Squadron is now the 7th Health Care Operations Squadron during a redesignation ceremony Aug. 23, 2019.

The ceremony marked the formal transition to the new medical group lined out by the Air Force Medical Service.

“This marks an important transition in the Air Force medical service as we reorganize two of our squadrons to ensure trusted care is provided equally to its beneficiary population,” said Col. Jeffrey Cook, 7th MDG commander. “The intent is to improve and sustain the readiness of our medical force and the medical readiness of our armed forces. It will also improve our beneficiaries access to care, lower the total management cost of the Military Health System and ultimately provide overall better health outcomes.”

Under the new changes, dedicated provider care teams will be aligned to the 7th OMRS, primarily focused on proactively treating active-duty Airmen and improving their ability to support the mission. Care for dependents and retirees will be handled by providers within the 7th HCOS. Therefore, some patients may be reassigned to a different Primary Care Manager team.

“Being able to focus on all active duty personnel and civilians within our new squadron allows us to process the administrative requirements that is needed to take care of their needs and ensure they are ready when our nation calls on them,” said Lt. Col. Stephanie Watkins Nance, 7th OMRS commander. “Keeping military personnel in one squadron allows us to have a single point of communication to better care for our Airmen.”

With the squadrons being reorganized, some of the clinics within the Medical Group are being relocated. The operational medicine clinic and flight medicine are now located on the second floor of the building, and the family medicine clinic along with pediatrics and women’s health are being moved to the first floor next to the pharmacy.

“This new process of providing care will help us streamline the process which will allow folks to be able to focus more specifically on treating Airmen and their families,” said Lt. Col. Marion Foreman, 7th HCOS commander. “We as a whole will be able to perform our jobs more efficiently and improve the base’s readiness.”

During the ceremony, the guidons of the previous squadrons were cased, representing the end of those squadrons and the new squadron’s guidons were unfurled, signifying the start of a new squadron and new mission.

“At the end of the day, this reorganization is only partially about structural change,” Cook said. “This is the beginning of a fundamental cultural change in how we care for our active duty population, as well as a change in our relationship and partnership with line commanders in returning Airmen to fully mission capable as soon as possible.”