Surgical Team 9 Brings
Capabilities to BHR
ABOARD USS BONHOMME
RICHARD, At Sea (NNS) — During Operation Unified Assistance (OUA)
in January, Fleet Surgical Team (FST) 9 worked hand-in-hand with
USS Bonhomme Richard’s (BHR) (LHD 6) medical department to prepare
countless numbers of vaccines for BHR’s Sailor and Marines going
Indonesia — Sailors and Marines assigned to USS Bonhomme
Richard (LHD 6) load pallets that are used to transport
food and water to the victims of the tsunami on a Landing
Craft Air Cushion (LCAC) assigned to Assault Craft Unit
Five (ACU-5). Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) Expeditionary Strike
Group, currently operating in the Indian Ocean off the waters
of Indonesia and Thailand in support of Operation Unified
Assistance, the humanitarian operation effort in the wake
of the Tsunami that struck South East Asia.
by Photographer’s Mate 3rd Class Jenniffer Rivera
/ U.S. Navy Photo
The Navy surgical
team enhanced Bonhomme Richard’s first-rate medical department
with surgical capabilities by providing the ability to perform
life-sustaining surgical procedures.
time we pull away from the pier, it’s not a fleet surgical team
separate from the ship," said Cmdr. William Leninger, command
amphibious task forces surgeon and FST 9 officer in charge. "The
surgical team is an added capability to the whole BHR medical
department and as part of the whole ESG (Expeditionary Strike
Group) 5 medical capabilities."
FST 9 includes
a general surgeon, operating room nurse, intensive care nurse,
family practice physician, respiratory therapist, X-ray technician,
lab technicians and other general hospital corpsmen.
100 percent integrated with ship’s [corpsmen] company,"
said Lt. Christen Fragala, family practice physician with FST
facilities include six operating rooms, three X-ray machines,
an 18-bed intensive care unit and 600 light-care beds. The “Revolutionary
Gator” is designed to be a primary casualty receiving ship.
The medical department, with the added FST-9 capabilities, is
able to provide immediate care to stabilize the patients until
they can be transported to the closet hospital.
idea is, right on the scene, we can provide immediate, life-saving
surgery," explained Leninger, an Escondido, Calif., resident.
"We will stabilize patients in preparation for transport
and evacuation to higher level of care."
2nd Class Frank Dunbar, BHR’s only operating room technician who
works directly with FST 9, said BHR can provide immediate life-sustaining
not here to make you pretty, but more as a damage control,"
said Dunbar, a Sacramento, Calif., native.
In the pre-deployment
phase of training, 16 Sailors from FST 9 attended the Naval Trauma
Training Center at Los Angeles County Hospital at University of
Southern California. It was a four-week intensive, hands-on internship
style of training in real life trauma scenarios.
of the keystones of their training was four weeks at the Navy
Trauma Training Center in Los Angeles . . . helping taking care
of any trauma victims that came through, so they got very comfortable
with all the immediate, life-saving surgical interventions,"
The FST 9
trainees at L.A. County treated patients with wounds that closely
resembled the type of injuries they may encounter from the battlefield.
The training also taught the FST 9 Sailors how to react to casualties
as a team.
everything in a high pressure situation got me ready for what
I was required to do,” said Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class
Adam Greene, from Hendersonville, N.C., FST 9 surgical technician.
“Plus, I got to work with a lot of the guys on my team to
see how they are and how they react in those situations.”
Most of BHR’s
medical team agrees they hope they never have to respond to any
of these medical situation during deployment, but are trained
and ready to respond if the need arises.
is currently deployed as ESG 5 flagship conducting operations
in support of the global war on terrorism.
Richard Arrives On Station in Persian Gulf
By Walter T. Ham IV
BONHOMME RICHARD, At Sea (NNS) — After delivering more than 1
million pounds of humanitarian relief supplies ashore during Operation
Unified Assistance, the multipurpose amphibious assault ship USS
Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) (BHR) arrived on station Jan. 26 in the
BHR and the
embarked 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit bring a flexible, versatile
and powerful combination of capabilities to the region, including
the ability to conduct amphibious operations, non-combatant evacuations,
humanitarian assistance operations and maritime interdiction operations.
to BHR Commanding Officer Capt. J. Scott Jones, Bonhomme Richard
is a “multipurpose assault platform that has the kind of
capabilities our nation needs to deal with the threats in this
region and any other.”
brave young warriors who take this great ship to sea are ready
to do our nation’s business here on the point,” said
Jones. “They are committed to defending our great nation
and the hope we represent to freedom-loving people around the