The Air Force recently formed the 959th Medical Group to organize airmen to work with Army units at the San Antonio Military Medical Center complex on the grounds of JB San Antonio, Tex. This move is one of the final steps in the organizational consolidation of the Wilford Hall Medical Center at JBSA-Lackland and Brooke Army Medical Center at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston into SAMMC as part of BRAC 2005, states Lackland’s Dec. 7 release. The new group, which will report to Lackland’s 59th Medical Wing, will provide better management of the airmen assigned to SAMMC, states the release. “With nearly 2,000 Air Force members integrating into SAMMC, our Army and Air Force medical officers, enlisted [personnel], civilians, and civil service members are equal partners in a high-performing health care team,” said Maj. Gen Byron Hepburn, 59th MDW commander. “Along with the 59th Medical Wing, we will continue to be the largest deployment platform for the medical service” and “continue to provide the highest medical care for the San Antonio Military Health System,” said Col. Lisa Schmidt, the group’s commander. (Lackland report by SSgt. Kevin Iinuma)
As the Pentagon increasingly pivots its focus to strategic competition with China, the U.S. will look to expand its partnership with South Korea to increase security across the entire Indo-Pacific region, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said Dec. 2 during a visit to the northeastern Asian nation.