JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (April 8, 2020) -- As Texas stands up its first expeditionary medical facility at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center in Dallas, contracting professionals from nearby Fort Hood are providing some of the essential services necessary for it to become fully operational.
“Mission and Installation Contracting Command Soldiers continue to take on critical roles in providing operational contract support as more expeditionary medical facilities are established in response to the federal government’s fight to ‘kill the virus’ COVID-19 mission,” said Lt. Col. Kizzy Danser, the commander of the 901st Contracting Battalion and deputy director for MICC-Fort Hood.
Soldiers from the 901st CBN assumed mission command of Army North’s Joint Operation Area Central March 31 in Dallas as part of the COVID-19 response to support civil health authorities in Dallas at the request of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Within 24 hours of notification, Maj. David Hunter, the 710th Contracting Team leader, and Capt. Ena Baran, a 720th CT contract management officer, were on the ground executing an initial site survey.
“Having contracting professionals on-ground during the initial assessment is key in identifying critical support requirements that greatly facilitate a timely completion of actionable acquisition packages to administer contracts expeditiously,” Baran said.
Lt. Col. Latasha Watson, the 901st CBN executive officer, said the battalion hit the ground administering critical base life support contracts in support of 220 Navy doctors and nurses.
“The team, with the help of the 4th Expeditionary Sustainment Command operation contract support team, quickly prepared requirements documents and was able to award a lodging and meal contract within four days to sustain the Navy medical team for 90 days,” Watson added.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced in an April 5 news conference that the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center will serve as the first overflow hospital in the state offering 250 beds with room for expansion. Navy Seamen and Texas Army National Guard Soldiers began arriving last weekend to set up the medical facility in preparation for medical personnel.
Much like many of the MICC’s contracting units responding to the national crisis, the 901st CBN must find innovative solutions to overcome challenges to meet operational needs.
“Downtown Dallas has become a ghost town due to the shelter-in-place order resulting in limited restaurants open within walking distance of the hotel,” Watson said.
Due to this challenge, Danser immediately coordinated with Cmdr. Aaron Frank of the Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Unit at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Fort Worth to conduct an initial preventative health inspection of the hotel, which has the capability to provide meals to support the operation. Watson said the 901st CBN has since coordinated with the Army Public Health Center at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, to make the hotel a DOD-approved source provider of meals.
Contract execution by the 710th CT is also made possible by that same teaming approach.
“Reach-back support from not only the MICC-Fort Hood office but also the Fort Hood Garrison Resource Management Office definitely illustrates what the MICC commanding general describes as acquisition partnerships,” Danser said.
Danser also credits support by the 418th Contracting Support Brigade Government Purchase Card Program, legal and contracting operations teams in “re-defining the ‘team of teams’ concept.”
MICC contract actions are being executed through a coordinated effort by Army North as the Joint Force Land Component Command for the U.S. Northern Command. Serving as the senior contracting is the director of the MICC Field Directorate Office at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, with support from Army Contracting Command’s 410th CSB, which is co-located at the installation.
Army North has activated its 10 defense coordinating elements in response to a request from FEMA. These specialized 10-person planning cells are co-located with each FEMA regional headquarters and serve as the secretary of defense’s liaison to coordinate requests for federal military assistance from the government.
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.
Centers for Disease Control COVID-19 response
Army COVID-19 guidance
Mission and Installation Contracting Command
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