Maj. David Kreis, 944th Fighter Wing chaplain endorsed by Regular Baptist Chaplaincy, prays for mobilized Air Force Reserve medics before they board their airlift in support of the COVID-19 pandemic at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., April 5.

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz.—In response to short-notice mobilization orders, several members of the 944th Aeromedical Staging Squadron deployed today, April 5, to aid in the COVID-19 response in New York City and surrounding states. This deployment is part of a larger mobilization package, activated by President Donald Trump, of more than 120 doctors, nurses, and respiratory technicians that Air Force Reserve units across the nation have provided over the past 48 hours in support of COVID-19 response to take care of Americans.

In accordance with DoD and the Centers for Disease Control guidance, deployed members received medical evaluation and were screened for impact to their civilian communities and professions.

“We did not want to pull a doc or nurse out of their community clinical practice or hospital if already ensconced in coronavirus operations,” said Col. Teresa Bisnett, Air Force Reserve Command surgeon general. “It was truly a team effort with our units to ensure the right Reservists were selected to provide this surge capability to our nation.”

As one of the hardest hit regions in the United States, the Northeast is considered the epicenter of the coronavirus.

“My priority for the wing remains to take care of our Airmen and their families. We’ll keep doing that so these members can go help take care of Americans in need,” said Col. James Greenwald, 944th Fighter Wing commander. “We will stay connected with them and we will continue to help care for their families while they are deployed.”

The 944th ASTS has over 125 Reserve Citizen Airmen boasting a range of medical job specialties. Of the squadron members, all but a handful are traditional reservists, serving part-time in the 944th Fighter Wing while maintaining the same standards and training as their active duty counterparts.

This article, written by Capt. Monique Roux of the 944th Fighter Wing, was originally posted at 944th Fighter Wing. The article and photos are reposted courtesy of 944th Fighter Wing Public Affairs.