Air Force Surgeon General visits McConnell’s medical facilities

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jennifer Stai
  • 22nd Medical Group

MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. — Lt. Gen. Dorothy Hogg, U.S. Air Force Surgeon General, accompanied by Chief Master Sgt. Dawn Kolczynski, Chief Medical Enlisted Force and Enlisted Corps Chief, visited the 22nd Medical Group Oct. 15, 2020.

Both leaders visited McConnell’s medical facilities to observe how each clinic continues to innovate and maintain mission readiness during COVID-19.

“The 22nd MDG demonstrated great confidence and professionalism while sharing how they have tackled the challenges that COVID has presented,” exclaimed Hogg. “McConnell has given me inspiration to go back to [the Secretary of the Air Force] and brag on the great things [the 22nd MDG] is doing here that supports the mission.”

Innovation has played a key role during the pandemic, placing medical personnel at the forefront of advising commanders with effective ways to continue the mission. McConnell’s Operational Support Team is an example of how the medical staff is continuing to push Airmen to be fit to fight during unforeseen changes.

“I’m a big believer that the reason you have medics in uniform is to make sure that your Airmen are ready to do their mission,” explained Hogg.

OST supports the refueling mission directly by integrating themselves within a unit and evaluating ailments that can be improved through alternative health and fitness processes. McConnell is one of 14 Air Force installations world-wide to support the new initiative.  The innovative program can provide Airmen with a positive outlook on the future during challenging times.   

“Lt. Gen. Hogg said during her visit that she didn’t join the Air Force planning to stay for 37 years, but she joined for one enlistment at a time,” said Master Sgt. Christan Urquidi, 22nd Operational Medical Readiness Squadron dental flight chief. “It made me think about how we’re dealing with COVID-19 and our careers.  We take it one step at a time and although we plan for the future, we take care of where we are now.”