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Assistant Air Force Surgeon General visits LRMC, Germany

by Master Sgt. Scott Wagers
Air Force News Agency


12/19/2007 - Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Germany (AFPN) -- During a recent visit to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center Dec. 12, Maj. Gen. Melissa A. Rank interacted with staff and patients and commented on how armed forces medical care in Germany has evolved throughout her career. 

General Rank, the assistant Air Force surgeon general for medical force development and nursing services, drew upon past experiences of providing care for injured Marines following the 1984 bombings in Beirut during her visit at the center.

"The most striking differences (in the military medical profession) from then until now are the level of injuries that are being treated and the extraordinary nursing care being given by very qualified, competent medical technicians and nurses," General Rank said.

General Rank, who traveled from Bolling Air Force Base, D.C., establishes and evaluates personnel policy and enhancement actions for over 34,000 officer and enlisted medical personnel, creates and evaluates nursing policies and programs and also influences all medical force education and training programs to ensure the highest caliber of nursing care and personnel.

The chief of LRMC Women's Care Center, Maj. Elizabeth Decker, said having General Rank visit was "a huge honor."

"It's a chance for us to showcase our tri-service joint environment, something that medical service is evolving towards and they're looking to us to see how it's coming together."

The general also provided her and her staff with rare insight on the latest developments of current medical issues and policy, Major Decker said.

"It's information we never get access to," she said.

In addition to soliciting feedback from hospital staff and patients about quality of care and training competencies, the general also met with chaplains and chaplain assistants and attended a commander's call where she presented a formal decoration.

Near the end of her visit, the general shared this parting message for military members and their extended families:

"Your sons, daughters, brothers, sisters and parents are in good hands. Nurses, technicians and doctors are doing their level best to return (your loved ones) whole, of mind and body, to the best possible. We are working on helping them focus on their abilities -- not their disabilities."



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