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NEWS | April 2, 2024

Commander, Naval Medical Forces Pacific visits NAMRU San Antonio

By Burrell Parmer Naval Medical Research Unit San Antonio Public Affairs

Rear Adm. Guido Valdes, commander, Naval Medical Forces Pacific, made an official visit to Naval Medical Research Unit San Antonio at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, on March 25.

During his visit, he toured NAMRU San Antonio facilities at the Battlefield Health and Trauma Research Institute to include the Tri-Service Research Laboratory and hosted a townhall meeting at the JBSA-Fort Sam Houston Military and Family Readiness Center.

Valdes, who serves as the Chief of Navy Medical Corps, has oversight of 10 Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Commands on the West Coast and Pacific Rim as well as Navy Medicine's eight global research labs.

Valdes also serves under the Defense Health Agency as the director of the Defense Health Network Pacific Rim where he oversees the delivery and integration of healthcare at nine medical treatment facilities on the West Coast and Pacific Rim.

According to Valdes, NAMRU San Antonio is unique as it is located in a joint environment.

“In some of the other locations such as Dayton, Ohio, the research laboratories may have one sister service in the area, but here in San Antonio, there is the Army, Air Force, and Navy in the research arena,” said Valdes, who served as the commanding officer of Naval Health Clinic Corpus Christi from 2015 to 2017. “Additionally, NAMRU San Antonio is the only Naval research unit located next to Brooke Army Medical Center, the Department of Defense’s only level-one trauma center which I believe provides them with a significant advantage over the other labs.”

During the townhall meeting, Valdes provided information on the future of Naval Medical Research, the relationship in reference to DHA, importance of communication with the line community, and core funding. Additionally, he presented command coins to three outstanding NAMRU San Antonio staff members.

“As with the other research labs I visited, the caliber of scientists here is incredible,” Valdes said. “The level of pride in the projects they are working here in San Antonio, from basic to applied research, was easily observed. I realize that it takes a lot of effort, as this type of research does not happen overnight.”

NAMRU San Antonio’s mission is to conduct gap driven combat casualty care, craniofacial, and directed energy research to improve survival, operational readiness, and safety of DOD personnel engaged in routine and expeditionary operations.

It is one of the leading research and development laboratories for the U.S. Navy under the DOD and is one of eight subordinate research commands in the global network of laboratories operating under the Naval Medical Research Command in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Story originally posted on DVIDS:  Commander, Naval Medical Forces Pacific visits NAMRU San Antonio