JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (April 3, 2020) -- No sooner than returning from deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Inherent Resolve did members of the 902nd Contracting Battalion turn around to join the fight against coronavirus by strengthening healthcare capabilities in downtown Seattle.
Members of the battalion conducted a site visit to the Seattle Field Hospital located at the CenturyLink Field Event Center April 2 as part of the overall Army contracting effort in support of evolving needs by the Department of Health and Human Services as well as Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“The purpose of the visit was to conduct contract administration of ongoing service requirements and check on the delivery status of critical 25-foot partition units that will be used in the design of the field hospital site,” said Maj. Tom Cayia, a contracting officer with the 902nd CBN at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington.
Contracting Soldiers also consulted with the dietitian and nutrition team from JBLM’s 62nd Medical Brigade to develop an adequate contract to fulfill the patient feeding requirement at the field hospital. The medical brigade is responsible for organizing, equipping and deploying medical forces in support of global contingencies as well as support forces engaged in full spectrum operations.
Army contracting actions are being executed through a coordinated effort by Army North as the Joint Force Land Component Command for the U.S. Northern Command. Lt. Gen. Laura Richardson, the commanding general for ARNORTH at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, said April 1 in a DOD briefing from the Pentagon that the Seattle facility is the most capable hospital in the Army. As the component commander, she is responsible for all federal ground troops supporting FEMA by matching federal military capabilities and capacity to FEMA requests for assistance on behalf of governors and state and local officials.
Richardson briefed that the hospital should be ready to start treating patients April 3 as the rest of the facility is built out. She added it will be fully operational by April 7 and consist of 250 beds including 48 intensive care unit, 120 intermediate care and 82 minimum care beds, two emergency rooms and three operating rooms as well as a pharmacy lab and X-ray department.
Cayia said the Seattle field hospital will allow metro Seattle area hospitals to dedicate more bed space and allow local medical professionals to focus on providing care to COVID-19 patients.
Addition contract support by the 902nd CBN and MICC-JBLM in support of the 4th Expeditionary Sustainment Command includes staffing, facility support and security for CenturyLink, blanket purchase agreements for lodging and laundry services. MICC contracting personnel in Washington anticipate awarding contracts for food services and electric carts in the coming days.
About the MICC:
Headquartered at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, the Mission and Installation Contracting Command consists of about 1,500 military and civilian members who are responsible for contracting goods and services in support of Soldiers as well as readying trained contracting units for the operating force and contingency environment when called upon. MICC contracts are vital in feeding more than 200,000 Soldiers every day, providing many daily base operations support services at installations, facilitate training in the preparation of more than 100,000 conventional force members annually, training more than 500,000 students each year, and maintaining more than 14.4 million acres of land and 170,000 structures.
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