HomeNewsArticle Display

Prepared for emergencies

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician, poses for a photo at the Keesler Medical Center on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, June 9, 2021. Smith aims to become a registered nurse, like her mother and grandmother, by commissioning to become an officer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Mueller)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician, poses for a photo at the Keesler Medical Center on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, June 9, 2021. Smith aims to become a registered nurse, like her mother and grandmother, by commissioning to become an officer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Mueller)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician, disinfects the injection site for an IV at the Keesler Medical Center on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, June 9, 2021. Smith aims to become a registered nurse, like her mother and grandmother, by commissioning to become an officer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Mueller)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician, disinfects the injection site for an IV at the Keesler Medical Center on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, June 9, 2021. Smith aims to become a registered nurse, like her mother and grandmother, by commissioning to become an officer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Mueller)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician, inserts an IV at the Keesler Medical Center on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, June 9, 2021. Smith aims to become a registered nurse, like her mother and grandmother, by commissioning to become an officer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Mueller)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician, inserts an IV at the Keesler Medical Center on Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, June 9, 2021. Smith aims to become a registered nurse, like her mother and grandmother, by commissioning to become an officer. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kimberly L. Mueller)

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. --

 

A warm personality greets a sickly patient waiting to be seen.

“Right this way ma’am,” said Airman 1st Class Alexandria Smith, 81st Healthcare Operations Squadron medical technician.

Smith leads the patient back to an examination room, where she logs the patient’s vital signs and reason for visiting to get them on the path they need for care.

“As a medical technician we are the first people someone sees when they come into the ER,” said Smith. “We escort them to a room depending on what they're here for and help take care of them.”

Smith’s goal is to commission later on in her career to continue on the path of becoming a registered nurse, something she went to school for prior to joining the Air Force.

“My family are all nurses,” said Smith. “I really enjoy the work, meeting new patients and getting to see different injuries and illnesses every day is rewarding.”

Smith and other medical workers are able to maintain awareness and the best possible care for patients using the resources available from the Department of Defense and Center for Disease Control. Having the ability to care for a variety of ailments allows them the capability to not only save lives at Keesler Medical Center, but the local area as well.

“We need to know what to do when we come in contact with a patient outside of our hospital,” said Smith. “In the ER, as a medical technician, we go on emergency medical services calls in the surrounding area, like base housing. You never know what you’re walking into and you have to be ready to adapt when you get there.”