NEWS | July 17, 2020

Feedback Fridays

By Brig. Gen. Caroline M. Miller 502d Air Base Wing Commander

Feedback Fridays is a weekly forum that aims to connect the 502d Air Base Wing with members of the Joint Base San Antonio community. Questions are collected during commander’s calls, town hall meetings and throughout the week.

If you have a question or concern, please send an email to jbsapublicaffairs@gmail.com using the subject line “Feedback Fridays.” Questions will be further researched and published as information becomes available.

Q. What is Spark Tank?

A. The Spark Tank 2021 idea-generation is an annual campaign that gives members of the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force (enlisted, officer, Reserve, Guard, and civilian employees) the opportunity to submit innovative ideas to tackle the Air and Space Forces’ toughest challenges.

The event is designed to encourage intrapreneurship, retain innovators, and speed adoption of emerging technologies – especially those developed by Airmen that impact their largest challenges.

Selected finalists may have the opportunity to pitch innovative ideas to top Air Force leadership and a panel of industry experts. Hosted each year at the Air Force Association’s Warfare Symposium, attendees watch as Air Force leaders encourage Airmen to disrupt the status quo. Spark Tank campaign opened in the API platform on July 1, 2020 and will close Oct. 16, 2020.

For more information and to apply, visit https://www.afwerx.af.mil/spark-tank.html.

Q. While I suspected the pharmacy would be closed July 3, as well as July 6, I called first to hear their automated system tell me they were open as normal. There was no mention of a training day. 

Just to be sure, I went through the entire JBSA and JBSA-Randolph specific portions of their websites to ascertain if there were any announcements of a training day. There were none. The closest was the information to see an Air Education and Training Command website for a listing of all training days which I did and it said the only training day was July 6. So I drove out there and guess what? 

My question is why?  I realize the pharmacy would like to catch up with most of the rest of the base which has been on a training day since early March, but why can't they make it known without having to drive out to the base to find out?

A. Thank you for taking the time to write in and we apologize for the inconvenience. We are committed to providing exemplary patient-centered healthcare to our beneficiaries.

This feedback has been passed along to the pharmacy leadership and will ensure the automated messages and our website are updated for future family/training days.

For the most up-to-date information, please like and follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/59mdw and https://www.facebook.com/BrookeArmyMedicalCenter

Q. My wife and I were out on the golf course on Friday, July 3, and at 4:30 p.m., the national anthem played. I noticed a Security Force patrol car on the flight line adjacent to the golf course did not stop and render respect to the national anthem but continued to drive.

A. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Typically, individuals should stop driving and render the proper customs and courtesies when the national anthem is being played on Installation in accordance with Air Force Manual 36-2203, paragraph 7.37.2.5. Security Forces, however, are in a unique position as they are expected to still respond to calls for assistance or distress, even during moments of observance such as when the national anthem is played.

Q. Can you please allow retirees to access the JBSA gyms?

A. Thank you for your honest feedback and years of dedicated military service.

Our retirees, dependents and Department of Defense civilians are the backbone to our JBSA community and have earned all the rights to the benefits that come with serving our great country, but during this unprecedented time increased protection measures have been implemented to protect our active duty, Reservists, and Guardsmen to maintain mission readiness.

On June 26, JBSA transitioned back to HPCON Charlie to better posture the installation and help reduce community spread of COVID-19. This action was necessary to continue to protect the health of our people and the vital DOD missions we conduct.

JBSA is presently only open to Mission Essential and Mission Critical personnel. Only military members, civilian employees and other DOD-affiliated personnel (to include retirees, dependents, contractors) who are conducting official business or have appointments at a military medical treatment facility will be allowed on the installation. 

Reduced installation access is the same as previous HPCON Charlie procedures. Key highlights of services that were modified include fitness centers, which will remain open to active duty, Reserve and Guard personnel only. This not only allows our military population to remain mission-ready but also helps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in an area that is of higher transmission risk.

This decision was made based on data regarding transmission likelihood and with the consultation of public health experts.  We continue to monitor the COVID environment and adjust our services as necessary for the health and wellness of the entire JBSA population. 

Thank you for your support and understanding during these challenging times.