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Pharmacy helps to maintain deployability to missile field, abroad

Capt. Brennan Jacobs, 341st Medical Support Squadron chief of pharmacy services, simulates refilling a prescription Feb. 20, 2019, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont.

Capt. Brennan Jacobs, 341st Medical Support Squadron chief of pharmacy services, simulates refilling a prescription Feb. 20, 2019, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. The pharmacy refills approximately 4,000 prescriptions per month. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob M. Thompson)

Jessica Gaines, 341st Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, scans medications Feb. 20, 2019, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont.

Jessica Gaines, 341st Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, scans medications Feb. 20, 2019, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. The pharmacy supports the nuclear deterrence mission by ensuring the health and well-being of those who deploy out to the missile field and their dependents. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob M. Thompson)

Sherry Morgan, 341st Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, counts medication Feb. 20, 2019, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont.

Sherry Morgan, 341st Medical Support Squadron pharmacy technician, counts medication Feb. 20, 2019, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. The pharmacy serves active-duty members, their families and retirees. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Lauren O’Connor)

MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, Mont. -- Air Force pharmacists help maintain the health and deployability of Airmen.

The 341st Medical Support Squadron Pharmacy works to provide care for Airmen to maintain readiness and precision combat capability.

The pharmacy serves upwards of 13,000 customers per year, to include active-duty members, their families and retirees. Along with working with their patients, the pharmacy works hand-in-hand with other healthcare providers to provide comprehensive patient care.

“If a provider has a specific question about medication, we give them that answer,” said Capt. Brennan Jacobs, 341st MDSS chief of pharmacy services. “Our doctors here are very receptive to working together and giving each other advice.”

Although the pharmacy does not prescribe medication, they are still held accountable for knowing what their patients are taking, informing them what their medicine is and how they should be taking it.

“We have to know what people are taking and how it is going to affect them, because there are side effects with every medication,” said Jacobs. “We also describe to them what the medication they’re taking is and how to properly use it.”

While the pharmacy serves a wide range of customers, their primary mission is to keep Airmen who work in the nuclear enterprise healthy so they can fulfill their duties.

“Keeping people wartime mission-capable bolsters our [nuclear enterprise] mission,” said Jacobs. “Trying to keep people mission capable starts with keeping people as healthy as can be.”

Airmen must meet individual medical readiness standards to be wartime mission-capable. Personnel accountability is one of the biggest factors in Airmen readiness and helping agencies, like the pharmacy, are there to help when called upon.

Maintaining fitness for duty is critical, whether it’s being fit to deploy overseas or completing wartime missions from home station.

“Being ready to go is in our DNA,” said Lt. Gen. Brian Kelly, Air Force deputy chief of staff for manpower, personnel and services. “It comes from our expeditionary roots as Airmen.”

As stated by the secretary, chief of staff and chief master sgt. of the Air Force, the defense of the nation requires Airmen to be ready to deploy at all times.
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