COVID infection rates are once again increasing around the world. As this article is published many military installations across the country are increasing their Health Protection Condition (HPCON) levels to Bravo. Sources indicate that an announcement is expected from the SECDEF today, 6 Aug 2021, making COVID vaccinations mandatory for active duty military members. President Biden has already made it mandatory for federal workers to present proof of vaccination or comply with mandatory masking and testing. With these changes happening throughout the national defense community it’s worth looking back once again to see how the Army has handled pandemics in the past. Sanders Marble, Senior Historian at the Army Medical Department Center of History & Heritage, looks back through time at the Army’s response to multiple pandemics. He highlights the difficult decisions the military has had to make balancing medical risks, force protection and the need to accomplish the mission.
For today and tomorrow, I think it can remind us of one tool that’s been tried for some bootstrap professional development, and also make us think about how all officers need to balance deep domain knowledge and broader military knowledge. In 1921, Surgeon General Merritte Ireland needed to reorient his doctors. He felt they were […]