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 A Summary History of the 44th Medical Brigade

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44TH MEDCOM FT Bragg
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"Ready, Reliable, and Relevant"

(Updated 5-17-08)

The job of the 44th Medical Brigade, now the 44th Medical Command, is to organize, train, deploy, command and control their subordinate medical units to provide corps-level combat medical, and community health support, across all levels of conflict and in peacetime garrison environment. The 44th Medical Command is currently stationed at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina. Fort Bragg subordinate units include the HHC 44th MEDCOM, the 28th Combat Support Hospital, the 261st Medical Battalion (Multifunctional), the 51st MED (VS), The 248th MED (VS) and the 257th MED (DS). The 44th Medical Command also controls the 86th Combat Support Hospital at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky, the 14th Combat Support Hospital at Ft. Benning, Georgia, the 6th Medical Logistics Management Center (MLMC) at Ft. Detrick, Maryland, and the 1st Area Medical Laboratory (AML) and the 9th AML at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland.

The 44th Medical Brigade was formed on 30 December 1965 and was activated on 1 January 1966 at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, the home of the Army Medical Branch. The Brigade deployed to Vietnam, where it participated in 12 of the 17 campaigns, including Counteroffensive, Counteroffensive Phases II through VII, Tet Counteroffensive; Summer-Fall 1969; Winter-Spring 1970, and the Sanctuary Counteroffensive.Click to preview or purchase "The Boldest Plan is the Best" from Amazon.com

In March, 1970, the 44th Medical Brigade Headquarters was merged with the United States Army, Vietnam Surgeon's Office to form the Medical Command, Vietnam (Provisional). The 44th Medical Brigade's colors were returned to the United States in December of 1970. During the Brigade's service in Vietnam, it was awarded two Meritorious Unit Commendation Streamers. The streamers are embroidered "Vietnam 1969-1970" by the government of the Republic of Vietnam.

On March 19, 1973, the 44th Medical Brigade was inactivated at Fort Meade, Maryland. The Brigade was reactivated on September 21, 1974 at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. On July 16, 1993, the 44th Medical Brigade became a separate major subordinate command reporting directly to the XVIII Airborne Corps with a general officer commanding.

Since moving to Ft. Bragg, elements of the 44th Medical Brigade have participated in Operation URGENT FURY in Grenada (October, 1983), Operation JUST CAUSE in Panama (December, 1989), Operations DESERT SHIELD (August, 1990) and DESERT STORM (February, 1991) in Saudi Arabia, and Operation UPHOLD DEMOCRACY in Haiti (September, 1994). The Brigade has also participated in humanitarian relief missions. Of note are the hurricane relief efforts in the United States, including those following Hurricanes Andrew (1992), Katrina (2005), and Rita (2005).

The Brigade was converted to a Medical Command on 16 October 2001 and became a multi-component unit. While at Fort Bragg the 44th Medical Brigade had become an airborne unit, but as part of its conversion the 44th Medical Command lost this designation. Elements of the 44th Medical Brigade have deployed to both Iraq and Afghanistan in support of the Global War on Terrorism. During 2006 the 14th Combat Support Hospital deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The 28th Combat Support Hospital and the 86th Combat Support Hospital have both deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 04-06. These two units served as the "Baghdad ER," which was highlighted by the 86th CSH in the HBO documentary of the same name.

The 44th Medical Command transferred their responsibilities as the commanding medical unit in Multinational Corps-Iraq to the 30th Medical Brigade from Heidelberg, Germany on October 18, 2005. During their tour the 44th Medical Command conducted more than 400 brain surgeries, nearly 7,000 general surgery procedures, 6,000 orthopedic procedures and close to 1,500 subspecialty surgical procedures.

The 44th MEDCOM's stated mission is to "Organize, resource, train, sustain, deploy, command, control and support assigned and attached healthcare capabilities to provide flexible, responsive and effective health service support and force health protection to supported forces conducting joint and simultaneous full spectrum operations." The professionals who are assigned to this command perform this mission superbly, proving their motto, that they are "Ready, Relevant, and Reliable."

 

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