Skip to main content

Military Health System

Camp Zama veterinary medicine continues during COVID-19

Image of Two veterinary personnel wearing masks examine a dog. Army Cpl. Madison Green, and animal care specialist and Capt. (Dr.) Mary McLean, office in charge, both assigned to the Camp Zama Veterinary Treatment Facility examine Roxy, a shepherd mix. (Photo by Winifred Brown, Camp Zama, JAPAN)

Recommended Content:

Veterinary Service | Coronavirus & the MHS Response

Staff at the Camp Zama Veterinary Treatment Facility in Japan have always worked diligently to gain the trust of their clients, and under recent COVID-19 restrictions, those efforts are paying off.

“I trust them,” said Carolina Chong, shortly after handing over her two dogs’ leashes to Army Cpl. Madison Green, an animal care specialist, so they could go in for their appointments without her.

The facility’s waiting and exam rooms are too small to accommodate proper social distancing under COVID-19 restrictions, so staff members check in pets at the curb and bring them in without their owners, said Army Capt. (Dr.) Mary McLean, veterinarian and officer in charge of the facility.

McLean said she understands why some owners may have reservations about separating from their pets, but the facility’s team does everything possible to make patients feel comfortable.

“We utilize low-stress handling techniques, have a wide variety of special treats to offer, and have been known to just sit on the floor and cuddle with a dog for a few minutes until we gain their trust,” McLean said.

Chong stated how she felt no anxiety letting Layla, an 8-year-old beagle, and Roxy, a 7-year-old shepherd mix, go in without her because they have been visiting the clinic for about a year, and have bonded with staff members.

“Layla absolutely loves it here,” Chong said. “She comes in and she tries to jump out of the car. They’ve just been great. You can tell that the staff really love the pets.”

McLean said the clinic has remained open throughout the pandemic, but for safety reasons, personnel made evolving adjustments to some services based on staff and equipment availability.

“When a majority of our staff was forced to work from home, we began offering telemedicine appointments when appropriate,” McLean said. “Because our patients can’t tell us what’s wrong, veterinarians rely heavily on a physical exam, so veterinary telemedicine may have more limitations than our human counterparts.”

The best way to accommodate physical exams was the curbside check-ins and pet-only visits inside the building, McLean said, and they have worked well.

The clinic is a part of Public Health Activity – Japan, which falls under Public Health Command – Pacific and Regional Health Command – Pacific, McLean said. The clinic’s primary mission is to provide full-service veterinary care to Military Working Dogs across all branches of the Department of Defense.

Usually, however, MWDs are a healthy population, so for the team to keep their veterinary skills sharp, the facility relies on military pet owners to trust them to care for their animals, McLean said.

“The more experience we can gain from treating a variety of ill animals, the better prepared we will be to care for our MWDs if they become sick or injured,” McLean said.

The facility offers a variety of services, including routine preventative care through annual exams and vaccinations, health certificate exams, quarantine exams, laboratory services, surgery, radiology, acupuncture and dental care, McLean said.

Three Soldiers and three civilians staff the facility, McLean said, and two staff members, including herself, are veterinarians. The other, Dr. Isao Yoshikawa, is a Japanese local national.

“Doctor Yoshikawa has been a huge help finding specialists to refer some of our patients to,” McLean said. “Most commonly we make referrals to oncologists for chemotherapy or radiation therapy, or cardiologists for an echocardiogram if a heart abnormality is heard.”

The team also includes military food inspectors who are responsible for ensuring a safe and wholesome food supply by performing inspections of food vendors, such as commissaries, child care centers and dining facilities, McLean said.

Located on Camp Zama, the staff also provides support to Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Sagami General Depot, Sagamihara Family Housing Area, and Camp Fuji, McLean explained.

“From the joys of a new puppy to a heartbreaking diagnosis, we have to be ready to help our clients through a variety of emotions,” McLean said. “Every day offers unique challenges, and I love watching the Soldiers and civilian staff work together as team to accomplish our unique mission.”

You also may be interested in...

MHS COVID Response

Video
12/21/2020
MHS COVID Response

The men and women of the Military Health System spent 2020 working to protect beneficiaries' health during the coronavirus pandemic. Here are just a few of our accomplishments.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Heroes Behind the Mask

Video
12/17/2020
Heroes Behind the Mask

A tribute to those across the Military Health System who deserve recognition and thanks for their hard work during this pandemic.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

COVID-19 Response

Video
12/14/2020
COVID-19 Response

USPHS Lt. Courtney Labitzky, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 29, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

MHS Minute: November 2020

Video
11/27/2020
MHS Minute: November 2020

During Warrior Care Month, we reflect on the strength and resilience of our nation's wounded, ill, and injured service members, and recognize the caregivers who support their recovery and rehabilitation.

Recommended Content:

Warrior Care | Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Warrior Care

COVID-19 Response2

Video
11/27/2020
COVID-19 Response2

Army Spc. Sean Colangelo, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 23, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

COVID-19 Response

Video
11/27/2020
COVID-19 Response

Army Pfc. David Alvarado, assigned to the Javits New York Medical Station (JNYMS), talks about their position at JNYMS in support of the Department of Defense COVID-19 response, April 24, 2020. U.S. Northern Command, through U.S. Army North, is providing military support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help communities in need. (U.S. Army Video by Cpl. Rachel Thicklin.)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

MHS Minute: Heroes Behind the Mask

Video
10/8/2020
MHS Minute: Heroes Behind the Mask

In the face of a global threat, healthcare heroes across the MHS have donned their mask, and served on the front line of the battle against COVID-19. Tune in to this month's "MHS Minute" to learn more!

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Coronavirus & the MHS Response

The Military Health System Celebrates Labor Day

Video
9/4/2020
The Military Health System Celebrates Labor Day

Labor Day pays tribute to the American workforce. This year, we pay tribute to the Military Health System Workforce.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

MHS Minute: A Call to Action for Convalescent Plasma Donation

Video
8/24/2020
MHS Minute: A Call to Action for Convalescent Plasma Donation

Have you recovered from COVID-19, or tested positive for antibodies? Consider donating convalescent plasma. For eligibility requirements, and to find a donor center near you, go to https://www.militaryblood.dod.mil/Donors/COVID-19andBloodDonation.aspx

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine | Armed Services Blood Program

MHS Minute: DOD Focused on COVID-19 Testing and Treatment

Video
6/25/2020
MHS Minute: DOD Focused on COVID-19 Testing and Treatment

Have you recovered from COVID-19, or tested positive for antibodies? Consider donating convalescent plasma. To learn how, go to https://www.militaryblood.dod.mil/

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

MHS Minute: Military Leading the Charge on COVID-19 Research

Video
5/28/2020
MHS Minute: Military Leading the Charge on COVID-19 Research

The military continues to serve on the front lines of research and treatment in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tune in to the MHS Minute to learn more.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response

ICU Nursing Series: Assembling Pressure Tubing (March 31, 2020)

Video
5/11/2020
ICU Nursing Series: Assembling Pressure Tubing (March 31, 2020)

This video will review how to assemble pressure tubing to transduce pressures and waveforms from arterial lines and central lines. Connection to an ICU monitor with zeroing is also reviewed.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Airway Pressure Release Ventilation (APRV) (April 17, 2020)

Video
5/11/2020
Airway Pressure Release Ventilation (APRV) (April 17, 2020)

This video will explain the basics of Airway Pressure Release Ventilation, an option for mechanical ventilation, that is helpful as an oxygen salvage therapy for patients with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS).

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Ventilator Basics (ACVC) (March 19, 2020)

Video
5/11/2020
Ventilator Basics (ACVC) (March 19, 2020)

Ventilator basics (one mode) for non-intensivists

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine

Multi-Dimensional Approach To Intubation In The Setting Of COVID-19 (April 1, 2020)

Video
5/11/2020
Multi-Dimensional Approach To Intubation In The Setting Of COVID-19 (April 1, 2020)

In this video, a doctor and nurse will talk you through preparing to intubate a patient. At the end of the video we highlight some special considerations for intubation in the context of COVID.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus & the MHS Response | Coronavirus and the COVID-19 Vaccine
<< < 1 2 3 > >> 
Showing results 16 - 30 Page 2 of 3
Refine your search
Last Updated: August 15, 2022
Follow us on Instagram Follow us on LinkedIn Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on YouTube Sign up on GovDelivery