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Press Release | Feb. 10, 2022

Vermont National Guard conducts Medical Readiness Exercise in Senegal

Vermont National Guard Public Affairs

CAMP JOHNSON, Vermont  –  

Soldiers and Airmen of the Vermont National Guard will participate in a medical readiness exercise (MEDREX) in Senegal for approximately two weeks as part of the National Guard Bureau's State Partnership Program.

15 medical professionals with the Vermont National Guard will travel to Saint Louis, Senegal, during the second week in February. Personnel will include providers, public health nurses, combat medics, and bio-medical technicians in addition to command and control staff.

"The Vermont National Guard continues building medical readiness within our force by working with our Senegalese partners," said Lt. Col. Chris Gookin, deputy state surgeon, Vermont National Guard. “This partnership leverages the best out of all of us and increases all of our abilities to perform medical care.”

The Vermont Guardsmen will focus on performing medical procedures, repairing medical equipment, and skill building with their Senegalese partners. They will work with the both Senegalese military medical and dental clinics as well as civilian regional clinics and hospitals. This marks the second time the Vermont National Guard has visited Saint Louis for a MEDREX emphasizing patient care.

This is the fifth medical readiness exercise the Vermont National Guard has performed with Senegal since 2018.

"This continued training with Senegal through our State Partnership gives both of us more experienced medical professionals," said Gookin. "This skill building exchange continues to cultivate and advance the medical expertise within the Vermont National Guard, which in turn gives us more capable medical professionals in local hospitals.”

Through the State Partnership Program Vermont is paired with Senegal, North Macedonia, and Austria. Vermont has partnered with Senegal since 2008 and North Macedonia since 1993. The Office of the Secretary of Defense announced the new partnership with Austria in 2021. The State Partnership Program provides an innovative, cost-effective, and small footprint security cooperation program that connects the National Guard with the military’s of partner-nations around the world.

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