Health care Heroes: Whiteman AFB celebrates AFGSC Medical Professionals Appreciation Day Published Dec. 18, 2020 By Airman 1st Class Christina Carter 509th Bomb Wing Public Affairs WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- For the past ten months, the 509th Medical Group has been working hard to meet the challenges brought on by a global pandemic. In recognition of the hard work and dedication of all medical professionals, U.S. Air Force Gen. Tim Ray, Air Force Global Strike Command commander, proclaimed Dec. 18, 2020, as AFGSC Medical Professionals Appreciation Day. “Thank you to all Whiteman Medical Professionals for your tireless efforts in keeping us safe and healthy,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Jeffrey Schreiner, 509th Bomb Wing commander. “Our mission continues because of you. No health, no stealth!” To show appreciation for the medical team, 509th BW leadership visited the 509th MDG clinic to speak with Airmen and hand out hot chocolate and donuts while wearing masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Afterwards, four T-38 Talons, assigned to the 13th Bomb Squadron flew over the clinic. According to U.S. Air Force Col. Mark Reynolds, 509th MDG commander, Team Whiteman’s medical professionals overcame the challenges over the past year through teamwork, resiliency and innovation. “We’ve come together, leading efforts to obtain medical supplies, modify traditional processes, all while continuing to provide safe and exceptional healthcare in the face of a pandemic,” added Reynolds. Over the past year, the medical group implemented a curb-side pharmacy delivery, a telehealth service and a 24/7 hotline to answer questions regarding the coronavirus. While establishing new programs was vital to limiting the spread of COVID at Whiteman AFB, the 509th MDG also prioritized communication with Airmen and their families. “Ensuring patients understand their health is important to us as medical professionals and it should be important to our patients as well,” said Reynolds. “Communication is ultimately a two-way street between medical professionals and patients, and that should be clearly understood by both parties.” Communication did not stop on base. The 509th MDG, also worked hand-in-hand with the Johnson County Task Force to not only ensure the safety of Team Whiteman, but the local community as well. By working together as a team, the 509th MDG created many ways to help flatten the curve and protect Team Whiteman. “We have less than 300 total staff members in the medical group and everyone is willing to step up in assisting those in other work centers,” said Reynolds. “Rank or job title doesn’t matter, our focus is on the challenge at hand and succeeding as one team, which feels like being part of a family.” Whiteman AFB’s medical professionals continue to work hard to ensure Airmen and their families feel safe and are able to continue the mission without interruption.