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

Innovative mobile technologies impact DOD health surveillance

Image of Medical personnel using a syringe to inject a fluid into a test tube. Dr. Peter Larson loads an Oxford Nanopore MinION sequencer in support of COVID-19 sequencing assay development at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Fort Detrick, Maryland. (Photo by John Braun Jr., USAMRIID.)

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Research and Innovation | Health Care Technology

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of collaboration and information-sharing forums for those working in the health field.

An example of one such forum is the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Division (AFHSD), Global Emerging Infections Surveillance (GEIS) Branch’s Next Generation Sequencing and Bioinformatics Consortium (NGSBC) and their mobile next generation sequencing (NGS) working group.

The NGSBC was created in 2017, bringing together DOD partners for coordination and improvement of pathogen genetic sequencing and analysis efforts. Subject matter experts from the Naval Medical Research Center, U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine, and the Naval Health Research Center assist the overseas service laboratories and other partners with protocol development, sample processing, and sequence data analysis.

As genetic sequencing capabilities have evolved and grown, so has the desire to have mobile platforms that could shorten the time from sample collection to final results reporting. Therefore GEIS and partners are exploring the use of mobile NGS technology in the laboratory, the field, and austere environments. To support these efforts, the mobile NGS working group was derived from the NGSBC in 2019 and focuses on increasing knowledge and use of mobile NGS technologies.

“This is a much needed working group to connect portable sequencing platform users across the DOD,” said Dr. Cory Bernhards, a member of the group who uses mobile NGS methods. “It will boost efficiency and foster collaboration among the different laboratories.”

The mobile NGS forum supports communication and collaboration between DOD and other government laboratories by creating a platform for partners to share protocols and provide training sessions. Participants meet regularly to discuss issues like how to address unique matters related to the way work is conducted in the field and not in a traditional lab - such as how to keep reagents and supplies at safe temperatures and how to perform remote complex computer-based data analysis. They also present use cases of pathogenic viruses including SARS-CoV-2 sequencing results from the Oxford Nanopore MinION, a type of mobile NGS technology.

“This working group will greatly accelerate progress toward fielding sequencing capabilities to serve and protect the warfighter,” said Bernhards.

The working group currently has more than 100 participants from 28 different organizations, including interagency partners from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Food and Drug Administration.

GEIS will continue to support partners in implementing capabilities for mobile NGS platforms, to set goals for using the technology, and to provide resources to address challenges. Navy Capt. Guillermo Pimentel, chief of GEIS, expressed his optimism for this mobile lab capability. 

"Having a mobile sequencing capability could provide an advantage in the early detection of an infectious disease that could negatively impact our deployed forces." Pimentel also highlighted the potential use of the technology, “The platform could also be used to determine if insects collected as part of regular vector surveillance carry viruses that could cause diseases in an operational setting."

You also may be interested in...

TOL Patient Portal Secure Messaging

Fact Sheet
9/29/2020

TRICARE Online Patient Portal (TOLPP) Secure Messaging (SM) provides Military Health System patients who receive care at a military treatment facility or clinic access to a robust messaging capability, allowing authorized patients the ability to securely communicate with their health care team.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology

TRICARE Reserve Select (TRS) Health Plan Reinstatement During COVID-19 National Emergency

Fact Sheet
6/2/2020

Fact sheet explaining that explaining that TRICARE Reserve Select beneficiaries now have five months to reinstate terminated coverage after their last paid-through date before a 12-month lockout period will apply.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Special Needs Program Management Information System (SNPMIS)

Fact Sheet
8/15/2019

SNPMIS documents and reports on services provided to TRICARE patients with special needs.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Nutrition Management Information System (NMIS)

Fact Sheet
6/19/2019

NMIS is a fully integrated nutrition management system supporting military readiness and the war fighter worldwide.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Defense Occupational and Environmental Health Readiness System – Hearing Conservation (DOEHRS-HC)

Fact Sheet
6/17/2019

The Defense Occupational and Environmental Health Readiness System – Hearing Conservation (DOEHRS-HC) is an information system designed to support personal auditory readiness and help prevent hearing loss through early detection.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Hearing and Balance Injuries | Solution Delivery Division

Military Health System (MHS) Population Health Portal (PHP)

Fact Sheet
6/11/2019

Military Health System (MHS) Population Health Portal (PHP) Fact Sheet

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Patient Encounter Processing and Reporting (PEPR)

Fact Sheet
6/11/2019

PEPR allows analysis of purchased care claims data created by the TRICARE Managed Care Support Contractors.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Expense Assignment System (EAS IV)

Fact Sheet
6/11/2019

EAS IV is a Web-based tool essential to the Department of Defense because it assists the Defense Health Agency in identifying the total cost of providing health care to TRICARE patients.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Coding and Compliance Editor (CCE)

Fact Sheet
6/11/2019

CCE supports the Department of Defense efforts to improve coding accuracy and reimbursements for inpatient and outpatient services.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Military Health System Management Analysis and Reporting Tool (M2)

Fact Sheet
4/5/2019

M2 is a powerful ad-hoc query tool used to manage and oversee operations worldwide.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology

Defense Occupational and Environmental Health Readiness System – Industrial Hygiene (DOEHRS-IH)

Fact Sheet
4/5/2019

DOEHRS-IH allows the Department of Defense (DoD) to manage occupational and environmental health risk data and actively track biological, chemical, physical health hazards and engineered nano-object process to service members worldwide.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology

Military Health System Data Repository (MDR)

Fact Sheet
4/5/2019

The MDR is the centralized data repository that captures, archives, validates, integrates and distributes Defense Health Agency (DHA) corporate health care data worldwide.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | MDR, M2, ICDs Functional Support

Defense Medical Human Resources System – internet (DMHRSi)

Fact Sheet
4/4/2019

DMHRSi manages human resources for the Defense Health Agency. It is the only Integrated Human Resource System within the Department of Defense.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology

Centralized Credentials Quality Assurance System (CCQAS)

Fact Sheet
3/14/2019

Centralized Credentials Quality Assurance System (CCQAS) is a web-based worldwide credentialing, privileging, risk management and adverse actions application that supports more than 105,000 professionals providing health and wellness services to active duty military personnel, their families and selected retirees.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology | Solution Delivery Division

Cyberfit Fact Sheet: Medical Devices 2018

Fact Sheet
10/5/2018

This Fact Sheet describes medical devices and provides basic guidelines on keeping them secure and safe.

Recommended Content:

Health Care Technology
<< < 1 2 3 > >> 
Showing results 16 - 30 Page 2 of 3
Refine your search
Last Updated: February 02, 2021

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.