82d Medical Group is "Excellent"

  • Published
  • By Brig. Gen. Richard Devereaux
  • 82nd Training Wing Commander
While the rest of Team Sheppard could relax after last September's ORI, the 82d Medical Group had to get busy preparing for two other inspections looming on the horizon. 

During the week of 5-9 March, the medical group was inspected by the Health Services Inspection (HSI) team and the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). HSI inspections and civilian accreditation surveys generally occur simultaneously every 3 years. 

HSIs assess the ability of Air Force medical units to fulfill their peacetime and wartime missions while AAAHC surveyors focus on the 82d Medical Group's delivery of health care in accordance with established national standards. 

Our medical group is accountable for approximately 1,400 compliance items between the two agencies. 

HSIs are conducted under the authority of the Air Force Inspector General and operate from the Air Force Inspection Agency. Overall, our medical group scored an 88 rating, which is an "Excellent."  The medical group scored "Excellent" or "Outstanding" in 11 of 16 rated areas and did not have any areas that were "Unsatisfactory" or "Marginal." 

As mentioned above, the MDG also underwent a simultaneous inspection by the AAAHC. The AAAHC accreditation process is still very new and like many facilities, this was the 82d Medical Group's initial survey under AAAHC standards.  Civilian accreditation pushes organizations to strive harder and achieve more for their patients. It also facilitates third-party reimbursement and insurance premium reduction as well as fulfilling regulatory requirements for licensure/certification.  Accreditation by AAAHC can be for 3 years, 1 year, or 6 months. The final announcement on the medical group's AAAHC accreditation will be available in 45 days when the final report is released. 

Even with three major inspections behind them, the 82d Medical Group does not get a chance to rest. In May, the medical group will be deploying nearly 60 members of their health care team, which is nearly 15% of the active duty clinic staff, in support of the Global War on Terror. Fortunately, over the past several years, many former military positions are now filled by civilians. 

This will lessen the impact on patient care during the deployment but presents challenges when adhering to the multitude of military compliance standards. With the PCS season looming, plans are already being made to ensure quality health care and top-notch customer service is provided to the Sheppard AFB community. 

Though you may have seen in the news some of the concerns on facility issues in military hospitals and clinics, our med group is in the final stages of a major facility upgrade! 

This past week, a remodeled student health clinic was opened on the first floor of the clinic, consolidating and simplifying access to care for our Airmen in training. Clinic moves will continue through the summer to help make the facility easier to access for patient care. 

Congratulations to Col Jim King and all the men and women of the 82 MDG for a job well done. A special thank you to Col (sel) Janice Wallace, 82 MDG/CD, who was the overall lead for preparing for the inspections. We really appreciate the excellent care that our tireless medics provide Team Sheppard military members, families, and retirees. 

You certainly provide a sustained "fantastic first impression" of our base each and every day!