Wright Patt: Physician part of Air Force’s global health initiative

Published: Friday, July 07, 2017 @ 10:26 AM

            U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Glenn Burns demonstrates how to communicate and read a patient’s symptoms during a cardiac arrest event using the METIman during the Advance Cardiovascular Life Support class in the simulation center at the military hospital in Kigali, Rwanda, May 3. Basic Life Support and Advanced Cardiac Life Support are part of phase four of the Defense Institute for Medical Operations program funded by the African military education to establish a reliable simulation center for the Rwanda military hospital to support United Nations peace-keeping operations.(U.S. Air Force photo/Ruth A. Medinavillanueva)
U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Glenn Burns demonstrates how to communicate and read a patient’s symptoms during a cardiac arrest event using the METIman during the Advance Cardiovascular Life Support class in the simulation center at the military hospital in Kigali, Rwanda, May 3. Basic Life Support and Advanced Cardiac Life Support are part of phase four of the Defense Institute for Medical Operations program funded by the African military education to establish a reliable simulation center for the Rwanda military hospital to support United Nations peace-keeping operations.(U.S. Air Force photo/Ruth A. Medinavillanueva)

Lt. Col. (Dr.) Glenn Burns’ passion for improving health has taken him around the world – to 65 countries and counting.

Commander of the 88th Emergency Services Flight, 88th Medical Operations Squadron, 88th Medical Group, Burns travels extensively because he is a recognized international health specialist and master educator. He is often accompanied by personally hand-picked medical specialists as well as medical residents, so they can develop their expertise in global health engagement missions.

Burns also is an associate professor of emergency medicine and pediatrics at the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine and Division of Pediatric Critical Care.

During the past year he’s traveled on missions to Rwanda six times and also to Laos, Cambodia, the Philippines and Thailand as part of joint operations between the Department of State and U.S. combatant commanders. His next venture will be to the Ukraine.

The Department of State works with such commanders to determine what regional needs are and how the U.S. military may cooperate with that country on improvement and stabilization efforts.

Burns joined the Air Force in 1997 and has devoted much of the last decade to global health engagement, he said, and wants more Air Force personnel to know about the opportunities such work affords.

“The International Health Specialist Program is a great opportunity, along with the Defense Institute for Medical Operations Program. They are looking for people with competitive academic credentials and experience, along with a certain amount of cultural competence,” Burns said.

He became passionate about global health because he wanted to do something different in his Air Force career.

“The Air Force tells you to expand your horizons and look for opportunities. I’ve always had an interest in preventive medicine, disaster medicine and global health and how to make the world a better place. You can make huge impacts when you work in international health,” he said.

As an example, he cited his most recent trip in May to Kigali, Rwanda, to help establish a reliable simulation center for the military hospital there to support United Nations peace-keeping operations. The DIMO-funded missions are assisting the Rwandan military with training their physicians to become their own instructors.

“Now they can train their own trainers so they can practice the same standards as we do and they can certify their own people,” Burns pointed out. “A big goal of what we do is to assist other countries to build capabilities they might not have otherwise.”

Wright Patt: Pathologists pave way for more accurate medical treatment

In Rwanda he helped personnel meet one of the United Nations’ standards of managing a cardiac patient’s arrest and survival.

“The Rwandan personnel were amazing to work with,” he said. “They are extremely open, receptive and excited learners who follow up with in-depth questions. Teaching there was very rewarding. ”

Burns said he is proud to be a part of Air Force Materiel Command’s culture of expertise and footprint in sending forth pockets of international health specialists.

He said he is thankful that his work is so well supported by Air Force Medical Service leadership, including Col. Shari Silverman, 88 MDG commander.

But the lieutenant colonel is away from home frequently, which can be a challenge to his spouse, Lt. Col. (Dr.) Cassandra Burns, a pediatric neurologist in the 88 MDG, and their three children, ages 16 to 5.

“They don’t like it when Dad is gone, and Dad doesn’t like it when Dad is gone,” he laughed. “But such work helps me expand the next generation of Air Force physicians so they get the knowledge and wisdom of what we’re doing. They are learning how to practice international medicine.”

Burns is encouraging Airmen to retrain and pursue a career change as an international health specialist or if not interested in a medical career, enter the Language Enabled Airman Program. LEAP sustains, enhances and utilizes the existing language skills and talents of Airmen across specialties and careers.

“When I hear people on base speaking a second language, I ask them if they are a ‘LEAPster.’ We don’t have enough such Airmen who have this expertise; we need more for international missions,” Burns said.

Retired Florida judge celebrates 87th birthday by swimming from Alcatraz to SF 

Published: Friday, July 28, 2017 @ 2:24 AM

The former site of Alcatraz prison.
Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images
The former site of Alcatraz prison.(Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

A retired Florida circuit judge celebrated his 87th birthday by swimming from Alcatraz to San Francisco’s Aquatic Park, KGO reported.

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Bob Beach navigated the chilly waters of San Francisco Bay in 46 minutes on Tuesday, averaging 67 strokes per minute.

“Water has been a big part of my life,” Beach told KGO. 

Beach grew up in Santa Monica, California, and put himself through the University of Tampa by working in a Tampa strip club, the Tampa Bay Times reported in 2008. He graduated from the Stetson College of Law in 1958. He took up swimming in his 30s after quitting chain-smoking cold turkey.

“Swimming makes you emotionally very tranquil,” Beach told KGO.

Swimming from the site of the infamous prison was not lost on the former judge.

“When I send those guys away, I can tell them I relate to them,” he told KGO.

Beach is no stranger to strenuous athletic endeavors. He also hiked up Mount Kilimanjaro and did a parachute jump in Africa. His next swim is scheduled to be under the Golden Gate Bridge, KGO reported.

Beach retired as a circuit court judge in Pinellas County, Florida, in 1993. He said his birthday swim was exhilarating.

“To say that you swam from Alcatraz on your 87th birthday and you made it. Are you kidding me?” Beach told KGO. “I’ll never have a birthday like this.”

Obamacare repeal fails again in Senate; McCain key ‘no’ vote

Published: Thursday, July 27, 2017 @ 6:32 PM
Updated: Friday, July 28, 2017 @ 1:51 AM

McCain votes no on Obamacare repeal

With Sen. John McCain casting a dramatic decisive vote, the Senate early Friday morning narrowly defeated a scaled back bill dismantling the 2010 health law, leaving in question the future of GOP promises to repeal the law known as Obamacare.

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The 49-51 defeat – capping hours of drama on the Senate floor - left open the question of whether congressional Republicans can carry through with a key 2016 key promise to repeal the law known as Obamacare. 

Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska and Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, joined McCain in voting against the measure. Their votes were less surprising – both have been consistent critics of the GOP proposals. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, opposed the bill and Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio supported it. 

The vote – which began shortly before 1:30 a.m. Friday – capped a dramatic week that included a press conference late Thursday where three Republican senators – including McCain - essentially pleaded that the Republican legislative package not become law.

Calling the Senate proposal “a fraud” and “a disaster,” Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina said he was prepared to vote for the Senate package only if House Speaker Paul Ryan promised not to pass make that bill a law. The Senate bill, he said, “was never sold to be the final product” – only as a means to get something passed so that House and Senate negotiators could work out the final details. He was joined McCain and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin. 

“Politically, this would be the dumbest thing in history to throw this out there, collapse the individual market and own the problem when Obamacare is collapsing,” Graham said.

Ryan responded hours later, saying “If moving forward requires a conference committee that is something the House is willing to do.” A phone call between Ryan, Johnson and Graham at around 9:45 p.m. Thursday sealed the deal: Graham and Johnson would vote for the Senate plan after all, if only to move the repeal of the bill forward.

McCain, recently diagnosed with brain cancer and recovering from a surgery, resisted.

Providing less suspense to the negotiations, Portman, R-Ohio, announced early Thursday afternoon that he would support the scaled-back bill, which on Capitol Hill quickly was dubbed a “skinny repeal.” Portman said “we need to repeal and replace” Obamacare, saying “this law isn't working for Ohio families and small businesses who've seen their premiums and deductibles skyrocket.”

The bill would have repealed for eight years the requirement that employers provide health care, repealed the medical device tax for three years and defunded Planned Parenthood for a year. It would also have ended the requirement that people buy health insurance or pay a fine. 

From the beginning, Republican senators acknowledged that they were only backing the most recent Senate plan to keep the process alive.

“If there was a health-care bill which couldn't get 51 Senate votes, why would lawmakers assume that a conference committee will magically come up with a solution that the Senate will pass?” said Brian Riedl, a former chief economist for Portman and now a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, a conservative nonprofit in Washington.

Medical organizations, meanwhile, warned that without the fines for not buying coverage, the already fragile federally subsidized marketplaces established by Obamacare could collapse.

“Eliminating the mandate to obtain coverage only exacerbates the affordability problem that critics say they want to address,” said David O. Barbe, president of the American Medical Association. “Instead, it leads to adverse selection that would increase premiums and destabilize the individual market.”

As Senate GOP leaders struggled to craft their scaled-down package, sullen conservatives already were blaming more-moderate Republicans for the inability to act on campaign promises during the past seven years to scrap Obamacare and devise a more market oriented alternative.

“This process was always going to be difficult—no consensus was built over the past seven years—but this week’s gamesmanship on the Senate floor highlights why conservatives are justifiably frustrated with the obstinacy of their more moderate colleagues,” said Michael Needham, chief executive officer of the Heritage Foundation, another conservative nonprofit in Washington.

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Because details of the package weren’t made public until late Thursday, it was difficult to calculate how many Americans would lose coverage. Democrats passed around a report suggesting more than 500,000 people in Ohio would lose insurance coverage and premiums in the individual market could rise by $550 per person.

Brown cited an analysis by a former insurance company CEO who is now a Case Western Reserve University professor showing "the so-called 'skinny repeal' would lead to millions losing coverage while driving up insurance costs on middle-income Americans and leaving taxpayers with a larger bill to cover."

OVI checkpoint scheduled for West Chester Twp. tonight

Published: Friday, July 28, 2017 @ 1:40 AM

WEST CHESTER TWP. — The Butler County O.V.I. Task Force will conduct an OVI checkpoint in West Chester Twp. on July 28.

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The checkpoint will be held from 9 p.m. on Friday to 1 a.m. Saturday on Ohio 747 north at Peters Place just south of Mulhauser Road, according to a Butler County O.V.I. Task Force news release.  

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Officers, deputies and troopers will aggressively combat alcohol related crashes by combining the checkpoint with saturation patrols, according to the task force news release.  

The Butler County O.V.I. Task Force is funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation/National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Ohio Department of Public Safety. 

Police: Minnesota man arrested for threatening Social Security employees

Published: Friday, July 28, 2017 @ 1:29 AM

Leonard Booth was arrested Wednesday.
Leonard Booth was arrested Wednesday.

A Minnesota man was arrested Wednesday after threatening employees at a Social Security office, KAAL reported.

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According to Capt. John Sherwin of the Rochester Police Department, Leonard Booth, 26, walked into the Social Security office at 10:15 a.m. and complained that he was unable to receive benefits. Booth began “acting erratically” and threatened employees with bodily harm, Sherwin told KAAL.

Sherwin was arrested by police and taken to the Olmsted County Adult Detention Center, KAAL reported. During the booking process, Sherwin said officers found Booth in possession of less than a gram of cocaine.

Booth is facing a felony terroristic threats charge and a fifth-degree controlled substance charge, KAAL reported.