177th MDG deploys to Spangdahlem AB to work with active duty, ensure mission readiness

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class William Sales, an aerospace medical technician from the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, demonstrates proper immunization techniques at the 86th Medical Clinic on Ramstein Air Base, Germany, Aug. 6. Sales is in the process of completing his immunization back-up technician training at the clinic. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class William Sales, an aerospace medical technician from the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, demonstrates proper immunization techniques at the 86th Medical Clinic on Ramstein Air Base, Germany, Aug. 6. Sales is in the process of completing his immunization back-up technician training at the clinic. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Taylor Binet, an aerospace medical technician with the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, conducts ambulance service training on Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Aug. 4. Airmen practiced on a dummy to be prepared in a real-life event when someone is unconscious, unresponsive and their breathing is compromised. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Taylor Binet, an aerospace medical technician with the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, conducts ambulance service training on Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Aug. 4. Airmen practiced on a dummy to be prepared in a real-life event when someone is unconscious, unresponsive and their breathing is compromised. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Ronald Paulin, an aerospace medical technician with the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, conducts ambulance service training on Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Aug. 4. Airmen practiced on a dummy to be prepared in a real-life event when someone is unconscious, unresponsive and their breathing is compromised. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Ronald Paulin, an aerospace medical technician with the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, conducts ambulance service training on Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Aug. 4. Airmen practiced on a dummy to be prepared in a real-life event when someone is unconscious, unresponsive and their breathing is compromised. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Robert Desipio, left, the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group commander, collects a water sample at an elementary school in Bitburg, Germany, as Senior Airman Chloe Anthony observes, Aug. 5. The school where they were doing testing is the schoolhouse for dependents of military members on Spangdahlem Air Base. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Robert Desipio, left, the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group commander, collects a water sample at an elementary school in Bitburg, Germany, as Senior Airman Chloe Anthony observes, Aug. 5. The school where they were doing testing is the schoolhouse for dependents of military members on Spangdahlem Air Base. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Patricia Hughes, a public health technician with the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, ensures meat is of the proper temperature during an inspection at one of the restaurants on Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Aug. 4. Restaurants on base are inspected about once per month to ensure the facilities are operating properly. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Patricia Hughes, a public health technician with the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Medical Group, ensures meat is of the proper temperature during an inspection at one of the restaurants on Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Aug. 4. Restaurants on base are inspected about once per month to ensure the facilities are operating properly. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp/Released)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- More than 20 Airmen from the New Jersey Air National Guard's 177th Fighter Wing Medical Group deployed July 30 to Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, for a temporary duty assignment with the U.S. Air Force's 52nd Medical Group.

Dentists and dental assistants, physicians, nurses, aerospace medical technicians, healthcare administrators, public health technicians and bioenvironmental engineers all made the trip from the 177th MDG and, working with their active-duty counterparts, experience training opportunities that may be unavailable to them at their home unit.

"It's great for these Airmen to come here and have the chance to do their jobs on a daily basis", said Senior Airman Jocelyn Martinez, a diagnostic imaging technician with the 52nd Medical Group. "A lot of these jobs, if you don't do it every day, it is easy to forget some things."

Master Sgt. Patricia Hughes, a public health technician with the 177th, was able to complete food-safety inspections of several on-base restaurants here on Spangdahlem Air Base.

"Back at home, I only get to do one or two inspections every quarter," said Hughes. "That's why it's so useful to have this refresher training here."

Airmen from the 177th MDG also tested water samples of local German schools, administered immunizations to local military members and their families, participated in ambulance services training, assisted with medical procedures, conducted pest and vector surveillance to detect the potential of disease transmission of local insects, and participated in scenario-based inspections.

"At a stand-alone Air National Guard base, we are often battling a lack of time, resources, or sometimes, both -- so the opportunity to train at an active-duty treatment facility is priceless to these Airmen," said Chief Master Sgt. Wayne Miller, superintendent of the 177th MDG.

"The active-duty base, given its resources, allows Air National Guard Airmen to utilize skills that are not used during unit training assemblies, and the collaborative work environment with the active-duty force ensures complete mission readiness," Miller said.

"When deployed, it does not matter if you are National Guard or active duty, everyone is expected to be ready," said Lt. Col. Robert Desipio, 177th MDG commander, "That is what this training is all about."