Iowa National Guard shares six regional anti-virus centers

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Staff Sgt. Mariah Klingenberg, a force support squadron Airman with the 132d Wing, Iowa Air National Guard, reads a Soldier’s temperature before they enter the Joint Emergency Operations Center March 26, 2020. Iowa National Guard Soldiers and Airmen who are on state active duty to support COVID-19 response efforts must have their temperature taken before reporting for work to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health of Iowa National Guard members. Photo by Sgt. Tawny Schmit

JOHNSTON, Iowa — As part of America’s war against the novel coronavirus, the Iowa National Guard is providing facilities and personnel to support six Regional Medical Coordination Centers (RMCC) across the state in coordination with an Iowa Department of Public Health and Iowa Health Care Coalition initiative to pool resources and aid in the sharing of critical information across multiple agencies.

Soldiers and airmen will help staff the RMCCs, which are based at Iowa National Guard facilities around the state. The guardsmen and guardswomen will gather real-time, validated health care facility status information in order to help health care providers make more informed treatment decisions based on immediately available resources, such as available hospital beds, available staffing, personal protective equipment (PPE) and other critical health care assets.

“RMCCs will help facilitate multi-agency and civilian partner communication, critical information sharing and coordination of health care related resources across the region they serve,” said Maj. Gen. Benjamin Corell, adjutant general of the Iowa National Guard.

The six coordination centers are located at Iowa National Guard armories in Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, Camp Dodge, Mason City, Council Bluffs and Sioux City.

“This scalable capability is a critical resource available to help decision makers save lives as conditions within the region change and normal response processes are not an option,” Corell said.

In addition to the RMCC mission, the Iowa Guard has established an operations center at its Joint Forces Headquarters in Johnston and task force headquarters at Camp Dodge, Iowa City and Sioux City in order to provide planning, coordination, communication, command and control of military forces activated in support of local, state and federal partners that are supporting regional response efforts across Iowa.

Every day Iowa National Guard transportation units are on the road, delivering PPE to county emergency management facilities across the state. With the assistance of the Iowa Department of Transportation and Iowa Department of Public Safety, all 99 counties have received shipments of PPE since these vital missions began March 24.

The Iowa National Guard is also providing medical screening tents to hospitals and clinics in Polk, Pottawattamie, Mahaska and Clarke counties.

There are currently more than 200 Iowa National Guard soldiers and airmen on duty in direct support of the state’s COVID-19 response efforts.

To keep up to date on all of the Iowa National Guard’s COVID-19 response efforts, find the Guard on Facebook and Instagram @IowaNationalGuard and follow us on Twitter @IowaNatGuard.

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