FORT IRWIN, Calif. – Under Secretary of the Army James McPherson and Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Joseph Martin visited Weed Army Community Hospital Sept. 20.
McPherson and Martin spent two days touring Fort Irwin and the National Training Center and stopped at the hospital because hospital visits are one of McPherson’s basic requirements when visiting an installation, he said.
“Whether it be a clinic or a hospital [like WACH], I always want to visit the hospital because that’s direct support for our Soldiers and their families and that’s the most important thing we do,” McPherson said. “It’s all about our people, and that’s what hospital staff does is take care of our people.”
Hospital staff including hospital commander, Col. Nancy Parson, briefed McPherson and Martin about the hospital’s status as the Department of Defense’s first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-Platinum hospital, its capabilities and services.
“[The hospital] just opened three years ago and we are a state-of-the-art facility,” Parson explained. “We do amazing work here at such a remote location and we’re here to support the National Training Center.”
Martin, who served as the commanding general for NTC from 2015 to 2016, said he remembered when the hospital was being built.
“This hospital was a dream and then it became a reality after I’d left,” he said. “It’s a great capability that our Soldiers and families deserve at a place that’s remote and isolated [and] where you just want to have the best care possible.”
McPherson stated that he was impressed with many aspects of the facility, including the COVID-19 testing and the care provided for pregnant Soldiers and family members, but the most impressive part was the staff.
“What a terrific team that [Col. Parson] has put together here,” he said. “Wherever we went, whoever we talked to their first concern was their patients.”
Martin echoed McPherson’s praise of the WACH staff.