PA-001-21 | March 19, 2021
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March 18, 2021
Contact: Lt. Col. Brian L. Mason
State Public Affairs Officer
Arkansas National Guard
501-212-5020 / 501-590-0318
Governor activates Covid-19 vaccination strike teams
~ 20 Guardsmen called to state active duty to put shots in arms across state
WHO: Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson
WHAT: Ordered Guardsmen to deploy four vaccination strike teams to state active duty to expedite administration of Covid-19 vaccines across the state to Arkansans as vaccines become more readily available.
WHEN: March 18, 2021. The mission beginning no later than Mar. 22 through May 20.
WHY: National Guard support has been requested by the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH), through the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management (ADEM), to provide Vaccination Strike Teams to assist the ADH and Local Health Units (LHUs) throughout the State of Arkansas in vaccinating Arkansas residents.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic over a year ago, we’ve all been anxiously awaiting a return to normality” said Maj. Gen. Kendall Penn, Arkansas’ Adjutant General. “The Arkansas National Guard is proud to provide strike teams composed of well-trained medical professionals and support personnel working to assist the Arkansas Department of Health and local health units as part of the Governor’s initiative to expedite vaccine administration.”
Each Arkansas National Guard vaccination team, called a Strike Team, consist of two (2) medics for the administration of the vaccines, and two (2) administrative personnel for administrative, documentation, and logistics support. Approximately 20 Guardsmen from the 77th Theater Aviation Brigade, 39th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 142nd Field Artillery Brigade, 87th Troop Command, and 189th Air Wing will begin assembly and provide vaccination strike teams at vaccination sites throughout Arkansas no later than Mar. 22.
The initial deployment of four (4) teams will occur on Mar. 22 with additional teams preparing to deploy at the direction of ADH. The Arkansas National Guard is prepared for and capable of expanding up to sixteen (16) strike teams.
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