Last month US Army Africa (USARAF) deployed a team of medical personnel from US Army Forces Command, US Army Medical Command, Army Reserve Medical Command and the 7th Civil Support Command for medical readiness training between the Kingdom of Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) and American military medics.
The Medical Readiness Training Exercise Medrete 14-1 comprised of a team of four US Army doctors and two US Army public nurses with backgrounds in preventive medicine, infectious disease, and paediatrics who worked side-by-side with Lesotho medical professionals to develop greater inter-operability between the two forces and sharpen their ability to detect and treat various infectious diseases.
Every morning medical teams conducted clinical rounds at Makoanyane Medical Hospital with each team member logging more than 75 hours and providing treatment to more than 400 patients during the exercise.
Afternoons were spent on 25 academic lectures focussing primarily on education, treatment and management of infectious diseases.
The team shared tactics, techniques and procedures and built on the capacity of the LDF medical personnel to prevent and respond to infections, disease outbreaks and other public health emergencies.
“We were able to learn how the LDF delivers care in an austere environment. There are a variety of illnesses we don’t see in the US so this event opened my eyes on how to deliver efficiency in patient care in an austere environment,” said Major Kevin Miller, US Army Public Health Nurse based with the 6250th USAH at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
The training also provided an opportunity for the LDF to learn how things are done in the US.
“This training was important because when working alone, things become routine. The experience has boosted us with new information to provide quality care. The US presence gave our hospital visibility to stakeholders who came to our school and presented information during lectures — we have never had them here before,” said Major Kehlane Makhoabane.