Back to Top Skip to main content

How the military stays ready during disease outbreaks

Headshot of Dr. Sanchez Dr. Toti Sanchez is a senior scientist and deputy chief at Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | Coronavirus

A Q & A with Dr. Jose L. (Toti) Sanchez, Senior Scientist & Deputy Chief, AFHSB


What is your focus area?

A major component of my work is to ensure that major health surveillance program plans and initiatives are current and reflect alignment with the Defense Health Agency’s Strategic Plan. Under the guidance of AFHSB’s Chief, I also help to build strong scientific and collaborative relationships within the Public Health Directorate.

How do you monitor disease outbreaks?

I spend a significant amount of time monitoring the many peer-reviewed, governmental and international association reports. I also analyze the disease outbreak reports and coordinate data gathering and report generation from AFHSB’s Global Emerging Infections Surveillance, Epidemiology and Analysis), and Integrated Biosurveillance  sections.

In my role as Senior Scientist at AFHSB, I serve on the Infectious Disease Clinical Research Program Operational Steering Committee, a “think-tank” committee of experts who provide guidance on military-relevant research efforts in support of the U.S. military’s force health protection needs. I also work as an instructor at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. I ensure students and residents in public health learn the basic skills of outbreak investigation, associated surveillance, and research initiatives.

How do you support AFHSB's response to COVID-19?

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed an immense workload on our AFHSB staff to produce analyses and reports for DHA leadership, senior DoD officials, the Secretary of Defense, and respond to questions from Congressional officials. In my role as Deputy Chief, AFHSB, I ensure that reports, documents and COVID-19 related policy reviews are accurate and produced in a timely fashion from AFHSB’s three sections. Since February 2020, I’ve reviewed and provided input to nearly 70 executive summaries , several information and position papers, and at least 20 weekly surveillance summaries addressing COVID-19 issues.

Where have you traveled in this role?

My travel is mainly limited to the National Capital Region. I’ve participated in tabletop drills such as an interagency simulation for Crimson Contagion, a response to a severe influenza pandemic. I’ve also served as a representative to the Defense Health Board to evaluate health surveillance matters such as COVID-19 and respiratory infections in support of DHA’s Combat Support Agency mission.

You also may be interested in...

Global Influenza Summary: April 16, 2017

Report
4/16/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: April 2, 2017

Report
4/2/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: March 12, 2017

Report
3/12/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: March 5, 2017

Report
3/5/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: February 12, 2017

Report
2/12/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: February 5, 2017

Report
2/5/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: January 22, 2017

Report
1/22/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: January 1, 2017

Report
1/1/2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: November 20, 2016

Report
11/20/2016

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: November 6, 2016

Report
11/6/2016

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: October 2, 2016

Report
10/2/2016

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: September 3, 2016

Report
9/3/2016

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Global Influenza Summary: June 5, 2016

Report
6/5/2016

Global Influenza Summary: June 05, 2016

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | AFHSB Reports and Publications | Influenza Summary and Reports

Study Finds Strong Immune Response to HPV Vaccine Among Female Service Members

Report
5/11/2016

A new study of female service members that examined their immune response to a vaccine to combat the sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer showed development of antibodies in 80 to 99 percent of recipients against each of the four strains of the disease.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | Public Health | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | Medical and Dental Preventive Care Fitness

MSMR Vol. 23 No. 7 - July 2016

Report
1/1/2016

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Increasing severity of traumatic brain injury is associated with an increased risk of subsequent headache or migraine: a retrospective cohort study of U.S. active duty service members, 2006–2015; Use of complementary health approaches at military treatment facilities, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2010–2015; Incident diagnoses of cancers in the active component and cancer-related deaths in the active and reserve components, U.S. Armed Forces, 2005–2014.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch | Public Health
<< < 1 2 3 > >> 
Showing results 16 - 30 Page 2 of 3

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.