HEIDELBERG, Germany -- Soldiers of the Europe Regional Medical Command's the 30th Medical Command traveled to Hawaii and Japan recently to support the certification exercise of the Pacific Region's 18th Medical Command.

The members of the 30th MEDCOM served as observer controllers for tasks throughout the organization, with an emphasis on exercising battle command within the staff August 13-29 in Hawaii and Japan. The result is the official certification of the 18th MEDCOM, making them ready for any potential operation in the future.

"We gained exponential training for battle command," said Col. Michael McDonald, chief of staff, 18th MEDCOM. "An exercise like this really lets you grow as a unit, and bringing in an external set of eyes can increase the training value a thousand percent."

Being an observer controller, or OC, means that the 18th MEDCOM is evaluated based on set standards from another unit with similar skill sets, organizational structure, and mission. The training helped both units learn and adapt in order to be more effective and efficient.

While the 18th MEDCOM was the unit being certified, the Soldiers of the 30th MEDCOM are already planning on how to use lessons learned from this exercise for an upcoming training event later this year in Germany.

The opportunity to serve as observer controllers during this exercise, allowed the 30th MEDCOM team to help train a peer unit, while capturing best practices and lessons learned, which are beneficial to both organizations, according to the 30th MEDCOM Chief of Staff, Col. Daniel Orrico.

Though the hours were long, the work and the team building proved invaluable, and training like this will undoubtedly pay dividends for both units and for Army Medicine by building trust and cohesion.

"The training reinforces the trust the Army has in its medics," said McDonald. "And we are USARPAC's medics."

Story by Capt. Charles Patterson, 30th MEDCOM Public Affairs Officer. For more information please contact the PAO at 30thmed.pao@us.army.mil.

Page last updated Fri September 9th, 2011 at 08:26