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New Kyrgyzstan medical facility offers high-quality care

by Airman 1st Class Ruth Holcomb
376th Air Expeditionary Wing/ Public Affairs

7/21/2008 - MANAS AIR BASE, Kyrgyzstan (AFPN) -- 376th Expeditionary Medical Group officials cut the ribbon on a new hospital building here July 17.

After nearly seven years operating out of a tent facility, the new building includes updated inpatient area, an operating room, emergency room, a new laboratory, a dental office and three individual patient care rooms.

"This facility will provide our community with a high-quality work environment and state-of-the-art technology and equipment for the 376th EMDG to effectively and efficiently achieve our mission of providing quality health care for our patients," said Col. (Dr.) Thomas W. Grace, the 376th EMDG commander. "It's been a long, hard road to get this project to where it is today. It's very exciting to realize that 27 health care professionals are already working here to further the health and safety of the Manas (Air Base) community."

The 376th EMDG works closely with the Joint Patient Movements Requirement Center and the Spanish "Mizar" Detachment to prepare patients for movement to Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan, or to military facilities in Germany for treatment of conditions beyond local capabilities.

The permanent hospital structure for Manas AB has been long awaited, taking nearly six years from concept to reality.

"It is exciting to finally be able to move to the new facility," said Staff Sgt. Sherry York, a 376th EMDG medical technician. "We will be able to operate in a more sanitized environment and it will provide nicer facilities for our patients, especially inpatients."

"This building will provide improved health care for our permanent party members and warriors coming in and out of Afghanistan," said Col. Christopher Bence, the 376th Air Expeditionary Wing commander. "The first patient was seen yesterday and kicked off a future of first class health care at Manas AB."

"The addition of the new facility helps enable the 376th EMDG to provide phenomenal health care 24-hours-a-day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to provide emergency life, limb, and eyesight preserving care for our patients, as well as ensure the continued mission readiness of the active duty force," Colonel Grace said.

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