By Mr. Paul Boyce (FORSCOM)March 1, 2007
At 10 a.m. March 1 Army Maj. Gen. George W. Weightman, commanding general of the North Atlantic Regional Medical Command and Walter Reed Army Medical Center, was relieved of command by Secretary of the Army Dr. Francis J. Harvey. This action has been under consideration for the last several days, with the final decision being made yesterday.
Maj. Gen. Weightman was informed this morning that the senior Army leadership had lost trust and confidence in the commander's leadership abilities to address needed solutions for Soldier-outpatient care at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The Commanding General of U.S. Army Medical Command, Lt. Gen. Kevin Kiley, will be acting temporarily as the Walter Reed commander until a general officer is selected for this important leadership position.
The Army is moving quickly to address issues regarding outpatient care at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Secretary of the Army Dr. Francis J. Harvey directed Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Richard Cody last week to develop and implement an Army Action Plan to address shortcomings at Walter Reed as well as Army-wide. The four focus areas of the Army Action Plan are: 1) Soldier accountability, health and welfare; 2) infrastructure; 3) medical administrative process; and 4) information dissemination. Gen. Cody put a 30-day deadline on many of these actions.
The Army also is participating in a Defense Department Independent Review Group, announced Feb. 20, examining service member's outpatient care and military administrative processes.
Both the Army Action Plan and the DoD Independent Review Group will continue examining military-medical rehabilitative conditions and administrative care in the weeks to come. The Army senior leadership will continue to take prompt corrective action as deficiencies are identified.
"We'll fix as we go; we'll fix as we find things wrong," Secretary Harvey said recently. "Soldiers are the heart of our Army and the quality of their medical care is non-negotiable."
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For more information, contact Paul Boyce at U.S. Army Public Affairs: (703) 697-2564.