Ponce, PR --
Airmen from the Iowa Air National Guard are providing no cost medical care during a two week medical exercise being conducted jointly with several other Guard and Reserve units from around the nation.
Iowa Guard Airmen are providing care to civilians in Puerto Rico as part of the U. S. Military Innovative Readiness Training program.
The goal of the training program is to provide realistic training while at the same time provide no cost medical care for people in remote areas who are medically underserved.
During the training period clinicians have set up areas to perform medical examinations as well as dental and optometry care in community centers in six different locations on the island territory.
The Innovative Reediness Training was originally created in 1992 as a way to provide realistic training in a joint environment in order to prepare U.S. military members to perform similar duties during a crisis at home or abroad.
During their time in Puerto Rico the medical teams are provided with hands-on, mission-essential training while simultaneously providing health care to communities in select locations around the island.
Events that are a part of the reediness training program like the one in Puerto Rico this week also aim to provide critical link between the military and members of the civilian community where the events are held.