Regional Health Command-Pacific’s vast and diverse mission is designed to ensure that combatant commanders are equipped with medically ready forces to fight and win our nation’s wars.
An equally critical component of that mission is caring for our wounded, injured, and ill service members and facilitating their return to duty or successful reintegration back to civilian life.
Throughout November, Warrior Care Month will be observed across the Army to celebrate the strength and resilience — physically, mentally, and spiritually — of our wounded, injured and ill service members, as well as their families and caregivers; raise awareness of the warrior care resources and programs available; and inspire year-round discourse regarding today’s warrior care priorities.
Secretary of Defense James Mattis recently summed up this year’s Warrior Care Month theme, “Show of Strength,” when he talked about the importance of the annual observance and the courage and strength exhibited by those we honor.
“There must never pass a day in our nation or at the Department of Defense when we do not provide our wounded, injured, and ill service members the best possible care and support,” he said. “They have done their patriotic duty; they are neither diminished nor dependent, even as we help them bring new strength to bear. In their eyes we see the best of our country’s fighting spirit. We are inspired by their strength in recovery, rehabilitation, and reintegration back to duty or transition into civilian community.”
Across RHC-P’s footprint, our team of health care professionals have the privilege of caring for hundreds of warriors who are recovering and undergoing rehabilitation at our Warrior Transition Battalions located at Madigan Army Medical Center at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, and Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu.
For more than six years now, regional health commands across the U.S. Army Medical Department have conducted Warrior Trials to allow service members and veterans an opportunity to set personal athletic goals and achieve them.
This year, Pacific Regional Trials were hosted by Tripler from Monday to Saturday. The event brought together more than 80 wounded, injured, and ill service members and veterans from across the region to compete in eight adaptive sporting events.
Competitors from the regional games have an opportunity to advance to the Army Trials and, ultimately, to the 2018 Department of Defense Warrior Games.
These competitions emphasize the benefits of adaptive sports in the healing process, as well as provide an opportunity for all of us to celebrate the excellence that is in each of our warrior athletes.
The significance of Warrior Care Month cannot be understated, because it reaffirms not just the Army’s commitment to providing access to the full spectrum of comprehensive medical care and support services that military medicine has to offer, but it also underscores this nation’s long-standing support and reverence of those who wear the uniform.
The Pacific Regional Trials were also supported by the medical treatment facilities along with our installation partners throughout the Pacific Rim. Together, they hosted open houses, local sporting events, town halls, seminars and demonstrations to increase awareness of the importance of programs and resources available to wounded, injured and ill services members, as well as their families and caregivers.
This month, please join me and the rest of our Army in celebrating our warriors who continue to show great strength and resilience in overcoming physical and emotional injuries.
For additional information on Warrior Care Month and warrior care programs and resources, visit warriorcare.dodlive.mil.