JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO- LACKLAND, Texas --
After seven years, the 59th Medical Wing will once again have an emergency center.
The grand opening of the Family Emergency Center, currently known as the Urgent Care Center, is scheduled for Oct. 1 at 11a.m. at the Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center.
Operating under its new moniker, the FEC will provide 24-hour emergency care to patients who would have been previously transferred to local facilities.
“We will have the capability to treat patients of all ages,” said Col. Keith Donaldson, 59th MDW vice commander. “Our pediatric patients will no longer have to leave or bypass JBSA-Lackland to receive emergent care, we can treat them right here in our facility.”
The 59th MDW capabilities will also stretch beyond pediatric and geriatric care.
“Our expanded capabilities include full-time ancillary services with pharmacy, laboratory and radiology support, and a wide variety of procedural interventions such as evaluating chest pain, stabilizing a fracture, or removing a toenail, to name a few,” said Maj. (Dr.) Jacob Powell, Emergency Services Flight medical director.
As a level four emergency center, some services will still require coordination with partnering medical facilities.
“The FEC is not a trauma center,” said Powell. “We do not have in-house capability for emergent surgical procedures. In such cases, the FEC staff will have the ability to stabilize and transport patients to a level one trauma center such as Brooke Army Medical Center.”
The FEC staff has spent over a year preparing for the transition. At midnight on Oct. 1, warrior medics will stand ready to provide high level, patient-centered care to all Tricare beneficiaries in the San Antonio area.