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(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

VICENZA, Italy -- Maj. P. Jason Auchincloss, the U.S. Army Africa - Southern European Task Force Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion senior physician assistant, was recently selected as the recipient of the Surgeon General's Physician Assistant Recognition Award. The annual award honors the Army PA considered to have made the most significant contributions to military medicine within the year. The award's selection panel included Lt. Gen. Nadja Y. West, the U.S. Army surgeon general and commanding general of U.S. Army Medical Command.

Auchincloss serves as the senior medical adviser to the battalion commander, command surgeon and regionally aligned force medical staff. In addition to making sure more than 600 U.S. Army Africa personnel at the USARAF headquarters in Vicenza are medically sound, he manages the medical clearance process for the Army service component command's official travel to Africa. He also serves as the delegated waiver authority for U.S. Army personnel traveling to 43 African countries.

Among Auchincloss' contributions to Army medicine is the development and enhancement of a tracking tool that helps to identify causal relationships between Soldiers' environments or actions and the development of disease or sustainment of injuries. This tool then allows medical professionals to advise commanders on disease and injury prevention.

"I've used it for a number of years and it's been modified to fit the environment we're in," he said. "It's a disease and non-battle injury tracking tool that allows us to identify early trends, disease and non-battle injury trends in particular, since we don't have too many injuries. It allows us to identify those trends early, identify causal relationships, and mitigate (those factors) quickly to arrest that trend.

Since implementing this process, USARAF has reduced DNBI rates by more than 40 percent. While he appreciates the honor of receiving this award, he knows he could not do it without the support of an amazing team. Auchincloss says the effect his work has on the Soldiers and USARAF's mission is what he most values.

"Taking care of Soldiers is, to me, the most rewarding part of my profession -- supporting the line so they can execute their operations successfully is the most rewarding piece. Second to that is the relationships that we develop and foster with the countries that host us."