Back to Top Skip to main content Skip to sub-navigation

Officials discuss Blanchfield Hospital’s future as transition nears

Army Maj. Gen. Ron Place, who was recently confirmed for promotion to lieutenant general and selected to serve as the next director of DHA, visited Blanchfield Army Community Hospital and Fort Campbell, Kentucky, Aug. 7 for more discussion about the hospital’s transition to DHA Oct. 1. (U.S. Army photo) Army Maj. Gen. Ron Place, who was recently confirmed for promotion to lieutenant general and selected to serve as the next director of DHA, visited Blanchfield Army Community Hospital and Fort Campbell, Kentucky, Aug. 7 for more discussion about the hospital’s transition to DHA Oct. 1. (U.S. Army photo)

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation | Military Hospitals and Clinics

FORT CAMPBELL, Kentucky — The Defense Health Agency’s acting assistant director for health care administration visited Blanchfield Army Community Hospital and Fort Campbell, Kentucky Aug. 7 for more discussion about the hospital’s transition to DHA Oct. 1.

Army Maj. Gen. Ron Place, who was recently confirmed for promotion to lieutenant general and selected to serve as the next director of DHA, was accompanied by Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Julie Bottroff, senior enlisted representative.

Place led DHA’s transitional intermediate management organization and has worked closely with personnel from Army Medicine, Navy Medicine and Air Force Medicine to reach the desired end state as outlined by law in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2017. It called for transitioning the administration and management of military hospitals and clinics of the three separate military health systems of the Army, Navy and Air Force to one, managed by a single Defense Health Agency.

“The importance for each of the services is that while they’ll lose their alignment of service designated healthcare organizations, the position of the Defense Health Agency is always going to be support to the services,” said Place. “So, whether it’s Army Medicine supporting the 101st [Airborne Division] or the Defense Health Agency supporting the 101st, that support will continue to be there.”

Place said supporting forces remains the number one priority of the Defense Health Agency.

“In terms of what doesn’t change – that’s one of those key things that doesn’t – our support of uniformed personnel, in this particular location, it’s the Soldiers of the 101st and Fort Campbell,” said Place, who also met with leaders from the 101st Airborne Division.

Under the transition, DHA will be responsible for health care delivery and business operations across the Military Health System and provide guidance on: budget, information technology, health care administration and management, administrative policies and procedures, and military medical construction. For beneficiaries, health care delivery in the Military Health System essentially remains the same and possibly better because it allows collaboration and shared resources across more facilities to improve the delivery and coordination of health services.

“In some cases, there are things that are better in one service than they are in another and for whatever reason that collaboration, that transfer of knowledge, just didn’t happen before and so [building the] collaboration has been useful,” said Place, speaking of some of the benefits realized since medical treatment facilities in the National Capital Region; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida; and Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi transitioned to DHA.

“The whole idea is to eliminate unwarranted duplication, to get rid of redundancies, to validate standard practices and then utilize those standard practices across the entire Military Health System. So change for change sake, is not happening, but the iterative process of continuous process improvement is the whole goal. That’s what our patients should see, a continued strive for excellence utilizing best practices across the service, standardize the processes and become more effective at it,” Place said.

At Blanchfield, the transition has sparked questions from Soldiers and federal employees about what the transition would mean for them, and if their mission will change. Place held a town hall for hospital staff to answer their questions and share information.

Place said DHA and the military departments are committed to ensuring the civilian talent in the military medical departments is retained to the greatest extent possible. More than 1,500 federal service civilians are employed at Blanchfield, supporting the medical readiness of Soldiers assigned to the 101st, Fort Campbell-based units and caring for Soldiers, Retirees and their families. Because the mission is virtually the same, Place said he doesn’t expect the transition to have any negative impact on Blanchfield’s civilian workforce.

During a visit last week, Place’s brother, Army Brig. Gen. Michael L. Place, who is currently serving as the Army’s Regional Health Command-Atlantic commander and oversees Blanchfield and other Army military treatment facilities from Fort Drum, New York to Fort Buchanan, Puerto Rico, shared the results of an assessment of the hospital.

“The Army has looked at our medical treatment facilities over and over again and we’ve got it just about right. The visits from DHA and Health Affairs have come down and validated that Blanchfield is the right size hospital doing the right kind of activities that we want them to do for support of a community of this size, providing this amount of readiness to our operational forces,” said Brig. Gen. Place. “I think people should be proud of that. DHA came down and said you guys are spot on, that’s what we want you to do. We don’t want to change anything. That should reassure a lot of people that we’ve got this and we’re doing it right.”

Maj. Gen. Place and Army Col. Patrick T. Birchfield, Blanchfield commander, also met with CEOs and operational leaders from nearby health care organizations who support military health care beneficiaries through TRICARE and the Tennessee Valley Healthcare System to share information and answer their questions about the transition.

“For our partners, their willingness to partner with us sometimes appears to go unrecognized and it’s very clear to me that the partners that Fort Campbell has, specifically Blanchfield Army Community Hospital has with local medical communities, is both deep and powerful and sadly, that’s not present everywhere across the world. The fact that it is here, potentiates the impact of the health care delivery system here and my personal thanks is to all those partners as they work so hard with us to help take care of our beneficiaries and we’re very thankful for it.”

Blanchfield and its entire network of TRICARE partners care for the needs of nearly 100,000 eligible beneficiaries.

You also may be interested in...

DHA Director visits MCAGCC to hear from the ‘Boots on the Ground’

Article
5/19/2021
Military personnel wearing face masks walking

DHA Director visits Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms.

Recommended Content:

MHS GENESIS | Military Health System Transformation | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

DHA, HA leaders discuss MHS Transformation at AHA panel

Article
5/6/2021
Military personnel talking at a podium

Army Lt. Gen. (Dr.) Ronald Place and Dr. Terry Adirim discussed MHS Transformation, MHS GENESIS, and highlighted the DHA’s response to COVID-19 in a virtual roundtable hosted April 12 by the American Hospital Association.

Recommended Content:

MHS GENESIS | Military Health System Transformation | Genesis of MHS GENESIS | Coronavirus | Readiness Capabilities

Wave CARSON+ deploys new EHR to 25 more MTF commands

Article
4/30/2021
Military health personnel wearing face mask looking at  a computer

MHS GENESIS, the DOD’s new electronic health record launched at Wave CARSON + over the weekend.

Recommended Content:

MHS GENESIS | Military Health System Transformation

DHA stands up new market in Tidewater region of Virginia

Article
4/29/2021
Military health personnel wearing masks holding up a flag

Tidewater Market is on the leading edge of the Military Health System’s historic change, following its certification by the Defense Health Agency on April 19, 2021.

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation

Tidewater set to become fifth Military Health System market

Article
4/19/2021
Military health personnel reading a medical machine

The Tidewater Military Health System market in southeast Virginia is scheduled to officially stand up April 19.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Military Health System Transformation

Tele-critical care will play increased COVID-19 response role in 2021

Article
4/15/2021
Infographic that says "202 tele-critical care successes will help 2021 COVID19 response"

Virtual health and particularly tele-critical care for critically ill patients assumed frontline roles in sustaining care while keeping beneficiaries and health care teams safe.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Military Health System Transformation

DHA preparing to complete treatment facility transition by Fall 2021

Article
3/31/2021
Military medical personnel giving a vaccine shot to a soldier

The Military Health System’s military medical treatment facilities transition in “deep throes” of completion by Sept. 30, Defense Health Agency’s Dr. Brian Lein tells AMSUS.

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation

Migration of MTF websites to TRICARE.mil complete

Article
2/12/2021
Three military personnel, wearing masks, sitting at a desk and typing on laptops

The goal is providing facility personnel and MTF recipients with a comprehensive source of information in an easily accessible, centralized location.

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation

MHS Transformation results continue during COVID-19

Article
1/21/2021
Military personnel in a supply room, reaching for the top shelf

The MTF transition has enabled the DHA and the Services to increase standardization, eliminate duplicative contracts, and realize cost efficiencies by beginning the management of an enterprise-wide program.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Military Health System Transformation

MTF facilities, markets set to resume transition heading into 2021

Article
1/6/2021
A military nurse, wearing a mask, prepares a needle for a vaccination

Butler says transition on track.

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation | Coronavirus

Deputy defense secretary stresses team approach in battling COVID

Article
12/10/2020
Soldier wearing mask, standing at computer monitors in an office building

The Military Health System has played an important role implementing the National Defense Strategy, Norquist said.

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Health Readiness | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

MHS leaders discuss future of military medicine during AMSUS panel

Article
12/9/2020
Military personnel, wearing masks, standing in a line in front of flags

For Dingle, readiness is the key issue during the transition.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Convalescent Plasma Collection Program | Military Health System Transformation

Pandemic underscores MHS’ need for reform, McCaffery tells AMSUS

Article
12/8/2020
Army soldier gets nose swab

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the MHS had embarked on reforms and initiatives to improve its medical support to the armed services.

Recommended Content:

Military Health System Transformation | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Vaccine Trials | Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit

DHA Director outlines how MHS standardization bolsters reform

Article
10/15/2020
Two soldiers in masks, talking

How COVID-19 repositioned the best laid plans of the DoD.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Joint Health Information Exchange | MHS GENESIS | Military Health System Transformation | MHS GENESIS Toolkit

Defense Health Agency celebrates seven years of service

Article
10/1/2020
Lt. Gen. Ronald Place holding a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery

Seven ways DHA has improved military readiness over the years.

Recommended Content:

Defense Health Agency | Coronavirus | Military Health System Transformation | Technology | Global Health Engagement | TRICARE Health Program | Total Force Fitness
<< < 1 2 3 4 5 > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 5

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.