Call to Duty
by Will SansomSecond Lt. Fernando Lopez Jr., a graduate of the Health Science Centerís School of Nursing, is assigned to the 21st Combat Support Hospital (CSH) deployed in Balad, Iraq. He is a staff nurse responsible for critical care and post-anesthesia monitoring in a 12-bed intensive care unit. The ICU provides medical care to American soldiers, Coalition soldiers, civilian contractors, enemy prisoners of war, detainees and Middle Eastern civilians including children. ICU personnel treat both battle and non-battle injuries.
Crew members also provide critical care stabilization and monitoring during medical evacuation for both ground and air transports.
"Iím proud of the care given to our soldiers," Second Lt. Lopez said. "As a health care team, we try our best to ensure that all soldiers get home safely. The most difficult part of this deployment has been providing long-term health care to enemy prisoners of war."
Second Lt. Lopez, a certified nurse anesthetist, said he misses home and hopes to return from Iraq in March.
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