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Commander's Corner

Andy Swartzell- Deputy Team leader

There is a lot of information that I would like to share with you. Much of it will be covered in more detail in our team meeting, Saturday June 1st, 2019 so I encourage everyone to attend. We are also On-Call for June, have rostered a team and will talk about preparations for deployment (if activated) at the team meeting.  We reached out to other teams for backfill support but still have some unfilled positions. If you have not already indicated your availability on the event sign up area of the website it is still not too late to be placed on the roster.

Some of the topics we will cover in more detail at the meeting are listed below. But first, here are a few announcements…

Deputy Team Leader Brandon Bond recently had back surgery and will be out of commission for our June on-call month. Please join me in wishing him a speedy and complete recovery.

Please welcome our newest team member, Alexander Louie, who completed the hiring process and has been added to our team staffing log as a Nurse Specialist!

Team Meeting

The agenda for the team meeting and supporting documents will be found on the Training Documents area of the team website. We will discuss the calendar of events (on-call months and team meetings) for 2019.  There will be “Stop the Bleed” training to include practice skills with tourniquets and wound packing.

Team t-shirts are encouraged for the meeting but you can wear the entire uniform if you choose.

We will also be discussing the relationship with CDMSA, the not-for-profit association that was created to support DMATs.

NDMS Updates

The ASPR, Dr. Kadlec, recently conducted two commander conference calls to discuss some changes in NDMS. The first call was to announce that the NDMS Director Ron Miller was tasked to provide program development support to the ASPR for up to 120 days. Helga Scharf-Bell is the acting NDMS Director. The second call was to announce the temporary suspension of the RHS and the Health Screening Guidance that has been used to evaluate team member’s ability to deploy. He stated that the guidance has caused “confusion, frustration and anxiety” and has requested a 30 day comprehensive review of the RHS process.

NDMS has finished the final version of the Incident Management Framework. The roles of the IRCT (or whatever it will be called) and Team Commanders are established in this document.  It should be available in ReL but I will see if we can post it in the website document area.

2019 Training 

In the second conference call the ASPR also said that he was committed to increasing the NDMS training opportunities. Currently only deployable team members can attend some of the training (ISO, NDMS101, AET, etc.) that has been scheduled. The ASPR was asked to reconsider including team members who have applied for new positions on the team and are waiting to be on boarded into the new positions.  Also team members can now sign up for courses when there are vacancies; not just when it is a scheduled time for CA-6. For example, CA-6 is scheduled for AET training in August but eligible team members can go to another date if there are vacancies.

All clinicians are expected to have the ISQ training and will have more opportunities going forward.

There is a new N-8020 Psychological First Aid and N-8030 Ethics for Govt. Employees in ReL. All employees will be required to complete these courses (again) although there has been no deadline for completing them.

Hiring Update

Another goal of the ASPR, shared in the second conference call, is to increase the number of qualified DMAT personnel.  To date 360 team members have completed the onboarding process since the DHA process was implemented. Almost all of the applicants were existing team members that were required to reapply because of a position name or GS rating change. There are nearly 1,000 more now in the final phases of the on boarding process and nearly another 1,500 more applicants who have received a tentative job offer.  CA-6 has several existing team members who have already completed the on boarding requirements and more are in the final phases of the process.  And CA-6 has 12 new team member applicants that have already accepted a tentative job offer. In the conference call, team commanders also asked to be able to deploy team members whose positions were removed (EMTs, MH Specialists, Security Officer, etc.) until they are approved in another position- if their current positions could not be permanently reinstated.

We will have more to discuss at the team meeting. Hope to see you all there.



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