A Humanitarian Revolution

The Air Force Medical Service has developed a new medical package tailored to humanitarian relief operations—the big difference in this package and the service’s expeditionary packages is that it contains a mini base support element. Lt. Gen. James Roudebush, Air Force Surgeon General, told attendees Wednesday at a Capitol Hill seminar that the 25-bed HUMRO capabilities package can be airlifted to any location and be “up and running in a few hours.” He noted that impetus for the $4.4 million effort sprang from Hurricane Katrina, during which the Air Force realized its medical only capability really needed basic support from security forces and airmen who set up housing, food, communications, and power. Roudebush said that, although the service hasn’t yet used the capability, it’s ready to go right now.