Skip to main content

Military Health System

MHS refractive surgery experts discuss warfighter readiness

Image of Mr. McCaffery looking at a monitor with an eye on it. Click to open a larger version of the image. Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs Thomas McCaffery observes the beginning stages of a refractive surgery at the Warfighter Refractive Surgery Center at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Oct. 21. The center is the largest refractive training program in the Department of Defense and has trained and certified more than 150 refractive surgeons. (Photo by Air Force Staff Sgt. Amanda Stanford, 59th Medical Wing.)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Readiness Capabilities

More than 200 participants from around the military ophthalmology and optometry communities gathered virtually on Jan. 8 to share ideas for the first time since the beginning of the transition to the Defense Health Agency.

The group participated in the “Refractive Surgery – Excellence for the Warfighter” virtual meeting where they discussed the latest techniques, safety protocols, and standards for refractive surgery. The meeting provided an opportunity for colleagues to share their experiences and get advice from experts, and was held in place of the annual Military Surgery Safety and Standards Symposium.

“We’ve been meeting since 2007 to talk about our best practices, our standards, lessons learned and safety,” said Army Maj. (Dr.) Gary Legault, Army Refractive Surgery Program manager and refractive surgery consultant to the Army surgeon general. “We emphasize key safety issues with the laser platforms and with our treatments and share the latest and greatest technology and updates.”

Refractive surgery is any surgery that eliminates the need for glasses or contact lenses. Refractive surgeries include LASIK (laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis), PRK (photorefractive keratectomy), ICLs (implantable contact lenses), and SMILE (small incision lenticule extraction).

Within the Military Health System, these procedures are designed to improve the functionality, lethality, and combat readiness of the warfighter through improving their visual system. Refractive surgery is offered at no cost to qualifying service members with conditions including nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism.

Legault explained that his hope was for the meeting to produce practical lessons that those in attendance could use on a regular basis.

“We hope this helps the people in attendance from around the world of military ophthalmology and refractive surgery learn something new that they can apply to improving their practice with their patients,” Legault said.

Among the positive outcomes from the MHS’s transition to the DHA is a tri-service effort to standardize refractive surgery across the DOD.

“For us, it’s a benefit as the DHA helps us improve our standardization and create a standard experience across the board as well as become more efficient,” Legault said. “I think the DHA can help us improve our outcomes by sharing best practices and working together as a group.”

Navy Lt. Cmdr. (Dr.) Tyler Miles, research director and division officer for Naval Medical Center San Diego’s Refractive Surgery Center, agreed.

“This is an opportunity for us to all come together and share what we’re doing. We have different flavors amongst the different services, and it’s nice to be able to share our gains across the board,” Miles said.

Paramount among the improvements resulting from the transition, is having a refractive surgery board at the DHA level, he explained.

“We now have a formal voice at that tri-service level, so that might bring some formal processes that empower our programs more than before,” Miles said.

As with many other areas of military medicine, COVID-related impacts to refractive surgery include a shift to a more virtual-heavy way of conducting consultations and pre-surgery briefs.

Legault said that the most important aspect what they do is improving combat readiness.

“We want to improve the warfighter in order for them to be better at their occupation, and we want commanders and leaders to know that we are here to help,” he said. “We’re here to assist.

“It can literally mean life and death where you can see your enemy through improved visual function versus your glasses fogging up or falling off,” Legault said. “These are procedures that can make a huge difference and occur within minutes.”

Miles agreed, saying, “This is one of the few instances where we’re actually enhancing the warfighter. We’re not just fixing them up and keeping them healthy, we’re making them better. We’re providing an enhancement by making them less reliant on glasses and contact lenses, which, although they’re effective in giving you clearer vision, may be a liability in certain areas where our folks are operating.”

Proof for him that their programs are headed in the right direction, he said, is in the outcomes he’s seen.

“You just have to spend a day in a clinic seeing post-operative patients,” Miles said. “They’ll tell you that it is life-changing to be able to wake up in the morning and open their eyes and see clearly, aside from the performance advantage that it’s giving our military.”

You also may be interested in...

MSMR Vol. 3 No. 3 – April 1997

Report
1/1/1997

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Editorial Comment; Hospitalizations and non-effective days, 1996; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, March 1997; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, 2 year trends; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, March 1997; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, 2 year trends; Completeness and timeliness of required disease reporting; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; ARD surveillance update; Supplement #1: Hospitalization Summary, 1996; Active duty hospitalizations; Active duty hospitalization rates; Total active duty hospital sick days; Non-effective rates, active duty hospitalizations; Sentinel reportable diseases, 1996 (vs. 1995); Supplement #2: Reportable Diseases Summary, 1996; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, 1996; All reportable conditions, 1996; Force strength (December 1996).

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 3 No. 1 – January 1997

Report
1/1/1997

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Gastroenteritis outbreaks among military trainees; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; Tetanus, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Supplement: Notifiable conditions Jan - Dec 1996; Notifiable conditions reported through MSS; Heat / Cold weather injuries; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Cold weather training guidelines; ARD surveillance update; Force strength (September 1996); Cold weather injuries in active duty soldiers.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 3 No. 4 – June 1997

Report
1/1/1997

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Risk factor analysis (part I), hospitalizations, OJE; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, May 1997; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, 2 year trends; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, May 1997; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, 2 year trends; Brown recluse spider bites among infantry trainees; STD trends, risk correlates and recurrences; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 3 No. 6 – September 1997

Report
1/1/1997

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Hyponatremia secondary to overhydration; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, August 1997; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, 2 year trends; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, August 1997; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, 2 year trends; Hyponatremia outbreak investigation; ARD surveillance update; Risk factor analysis (part II), hospitalizations, OJE; Heat injuries in active duty soldiers; Heat injuries, 1990-1996.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 3 No. 5 – July/August 1997

Report
1/1/1997

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Plasmodium vivax malaria of Korean origin, 1997; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, June 1997; Selected sentinel reportable diseases, 2 year trends; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, June 1997; Reportable sexually transmitted diseases, 2 year trends; E.coli O:157:H7, Fort Lewis; Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Fort Lewis; Shigella sonnei, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; ARD surveillance update; HIV-2, Walter Reed Army Medical Center; Supplement #1 : HIV-1 in the Army; HIV-1 testing program, 1985-1996; Status of HIV-1 infected patients; Prevalence of HIV-1, civilian applicants; Supplement #2: Reportable Diseases; Sentinel reportable diseases, 1st quarter 1997 (vs 1996); Sentinel reportable STDs, 1997 (vs 1996); Force strength (March 1997).

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 9 – November 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Shigella sonnei diarrheal outbreaks; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; TB Skin Test Converters, Ft. Leavenworth; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 3 – March 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Cutaneous Leishmaniasis, WRAMC; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Preliminary data: HEARS; Leprosy in a Navy family member, Ft Hood; Surveillance Trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI Hospitalizations; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 10 – December 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Overview of military respiratory disease surveillance; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; ARD surveillance among Army basic trainees; Air Force Influenza Surveillance Program; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; ARD surveillance update; Reported heat and cold weather injuries; Force Strength (June, 1996).

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 4 – April 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Rash outbreaks, U.S. forces operating in Belgium; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Injuries and fitness in BCT units, FLW, MO; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; Shigellosis case reports, WRAMC; ARD surveillance update; Supplement #1: 1995 Hospitalization Summary; Active duty hospitalizations; Hospitalization rates; Total hospital sickdays; Non-effective rates; Supplement #2: 1995 Reportable Disease Summary; All notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Force strength (December 1995).

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 1 – January 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Cold Weather Injuries, Oct - Dec, 1995; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis – WRAMC; Surveillance Trends: CWI hospitalization rates; Hepatitis A in a SF Unit, Ft Lewis, WA; Supplement: Notifiable conditions Jan - Dec 1995; Notifiable conditions reported through MSS; Heat / Cold weather injuries; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; ARD surveillance update; Force strength (September 1995).

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 6 – July 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Hookworm Disease - Ft. Drum, NY; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Malaria Outbreak, Vincenza, Italy; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; Heat / Cold weather injuries, Jan - Jun, 1996; Supplement: HIV-1 in the Army; Status of HIV-1 infected patients; Active duty soldiers infected with HIV-1; Prevalence of HIV-1, civilian applicants; HIV-1 testing program, 1985 – 1995; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 2 – February 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Injuries in integrated BCT units, FLW, MO; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Cold weather injuries, Ft. Drum, NY; Surveillance Trends: Hospitalizations, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI Hospitalizations; TB skin test results, Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 7 – September 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Rash illness outbreak among British Soldiers; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Leptospirosis - Tripler Army Medical Center; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 8 – October 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Vivax malaria in U.S. forces – Korea; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Diarrhea outbreak – Croatia; 1996-97 Influenza immunization guidelines; ARD surveillance update; Supplement: Notifiable conditions Jan - Sep 1996; Notifiable conditions reported through MSS; Heat / Cold weather injuries; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health

MSMR Vol. 2 No. 5 – May 1996

Report
1/1/1996

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Listeria monocytogenes meningitis, Ft. Bragg; Selected notifiable conditions; Notifiable sexually transmitted diseases; Strongyloides stercoralis hyperinfection; Surveillance trends: Hospitalization rates, Bosnia; Bosnia update: DNBI hospitalizations; Kawasaki Disease, Tripler Army Medical Center; Heat / Cold weather injuries, Jan - Apr, 1996; ARD surveillance update.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness & Combat Support | Public Health
<< < ... 36 37 38 > >> 
Showing results 541 - 555 Page 37 of 38
Refine your search
Last Updated: December 27, 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