SEOUL, South Korea — A one-of-a-kind U.S. military medical laboratory has worked to strengthen ties and forge greater interoperability with fellow South Korean commands on the Korean Peninsula.
Leaders of the 1st Area Medical Laboratory met with leaders of the Republic of Korea (ROK) Armed Forces Medical Command and the Republic of Korea Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Defense Command at their quarters respective generals in South Korea.
Col. Matthew J. Grieser, the commander of the 1st AML, and Sgt. Major Erin L. Trudden, the enlisted leader, visited their South Korean counterparts in command with Major Jang-woo Lee, Major Andrew Clark and Master Sgt. Stephen J. Riddick.
1st AML leaders met with ROK Army Brig. Gen. Dae-wee Lee, the commander of CBRN Defense Command ROK, and Brig. General Byung-seop Choi, Commander of the ROK Armed Forces Medical Command.
The two South Korean commands agreed to establish working groups with the US Army’s mobile laboratory to plan future combined field training exercises.
The ROK CBRN Defense Research Institute showcased its CBRN research labs and exhibited the deployable mobile analytical labs.
At the ROK Armed Forces Medical Command, the ROK military medical partners presented the control center for telemedicine, medical evacuations and mobile diagnostic laboratory.
1st AML leaders were also invited to the Armed Forces Trauma Center to observe the recently opened military trauma treatment center with the only hospital helipad in South Korea that met the specifications required for landing UH- 60 US Army Black Hawk.
Major Jang-woo Lee, from South Korea, said restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic have limited trade over the past two years.
“The pandemic has prevented face-to-face meetings and visits for the past two years and virtual meetings have had limitations, especially on engagements with foreign military partners,” said Lee, the former chief of the Biological Threat Assessment Section and officer in charge of the multifunctional threat. Assessment Troop 1 at the 1st Sector Medical Laboratory.
Lee added that the visits contributed to agreements on future collaborations between 1st AML and ROK commands.
1st Area Aberdeen Medical Laboratory, based in Maryland, is part of the 44th Medical Brigade and the 20th Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Command, the U.S. Army’s premier all-hazards multi-purpose command .
From 19 bases in 16 states, U.S. soldiers and U.S. Army civilians from the 20th CBRNE Command tackle the world’s most dangerous hazards in support of joint, interagency, and allied operations.
According to Grieser, the 1st AML commander, ROK commands are strategically important to the 1st Area Medical Laboratory.
“As the South Korean armed forces are the strategically important military partner in the Indo-Pacific region of the United States, it is important to build the relationship and maintain the partnership with them for the global operational requirements of the 1st Area Medical Laboratory. , especially on the Korean Peninsula,” said Grieser, a native of Mulino, Oregon, who deployed four times to Afghanistan and five times to Iraq and served in Haiti, Panama and New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.