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Military medical personnel dealing with COVID-19 return home


Sept. 23 (UPI) — About 740 military personnel stationed in Texas and California to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic have returned to home units, the Army said on Wednesday.

Declining demand led to an adjustment in the number of medical and support personnel needed, a statement by the U.S. Army Northern Command on Wednesday said.

“Through our Defense coordinating officers and Defense coordinating elements, we remain in constant coordination with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and have carefully monitored conditions as they relate to COVID-19 in both Texas and California,” said Lt. Gen. Laura J. Richardson, U.S. Army North commander.

“As demand for federal military support declines, so too can our presence as we reset for potential, future missions directed by the Department of Defense,” Richardson said.

The drawdown occurred throughout September. Army, Air Force and Navy personnel were assigned since July to 23 hospitals in 13 Texas and California cities at the request of FEMA. The last 10 leave were100 Army and Navy service members, from three Texas hospitals.

Stars and Stripes reports that the medical and support professionals were assigned to hospitals in San Antonio, Houston, McAllen, Corpus Christi, Victoria, Harlingen, Edinburg, Del Rio, Eagle Pass and Rio Grande City, all in Texas, and in Lodi, Rancho Mirage, Visalia, Fresno, Stockton, Hanford, Los Angeles and Torrance in California.

“The Department of Defense remains postured to provide capacity and capability when requested by FEMA, in support of local authorities, and is in the COVID-19 fight for as long as needed,” Army officials said.

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