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Mongolian Armed Forces, US Service Members Conduct Health Services Support Engagement

By Lance Cpl. Cedric R. Haller II | III Marine Expeditionary Force | June 25, 2015

Throngs of people gathered outside of the high school eager to receive medical care from military professionals from around the world.

Mongolian Armed Forces and U.S. service members, along with other nations participating in Khaan Quest 2015, established a primary care outpatient clinic at the 79th High School to provide direct patient care to local residents through June 27.

“The health services support engagement is an international opportunity that allows medical providers from around the world, invited by MAF, to collaborate and conduct a subject matter exchange in health care practices from their respective nations,” said U.S. Navy Lt. Nii Adjei J. Oninku, the lead medical planner for III Marine Expeditionary Force. “The overarching goal is for each provider, in their specialty, to learn from their counterparts from different nations. It’s an exchange of general ideas and practices to better each other, because multiple nations are better than one.”

The focus of the operation is to identify and treat acute or minor surgical conditions, provide health maintenance screening, as well as coordinate definitive treatment and home care for non-ambulatory patients. Various services to include dental, pediatrics, ophthalmology, neurology and cardiology are offered by multinational medical professionals throughout the seven day engagement.

“It’s good to train alongside other nations, especially during humanitarian missions where we will more than likely be working beside them,” said Canadian Navt Lt. Cindy Rochette, a nursing officer with 1 Canadian Field Hospital. “Having the opportunity to learn how other nations operate with actual patients is invaluable.”

The goal of HSSE is to enhance combined multinational medical capabilities while providing outreach to local communities.

“After each day, we have a discussion about what went well and what we could have done better,” said MAF 1st Lt. Ochbayar Naranochir, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. “We are better equipped and more knowledgeable than the last time, so I would say this year has been an improvement so far.”

The skills gained during this engagement by the medical personnel are secondary to the immediate impact made in the lives of all patients. More importantly, however, are the lasting benefits felt throughout the Mongolian community long after Khaan Quest 2015 ends.

“This has been a great experience for all of our medical personnel,” said Naranochir, an Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, native. “I’m very thankful for all of the participating nations for coming to Khaan Quest and helping my people.”
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