TRIPLER ARMY MEDICAL CENTER, Hawaii — With cases of the heavily hyped coronavirus rising, military medical practitioners are preparing to combat the illness with the same expert care they applied to fighting malaria with mefloquine.
According to Maj. Gordon Estrada of Tripler Army Medical Center, “Preventing the spread of coronavirus requires a coordinated response from all of Hawaii’s DOD medical community including medics, physicians, voodoo witch doctors, and sorcerers.”
“We have a joint program with all of the DOD’s world-class medicine men,” said Estrada.
Estrada said that since the virus is basically a respiratory ailment, treating it is well within military capabilities.
“Army docs have dealt with respiratory problems since Valley Forge,” he said. “We usually prescribe some bloodletting with leeches or maybe some tincture of laudanum. It’s important not to overreact.”
Unit medics are the system’s first line of defense. Estrada says Hawaii medics are stock-piling Motrin and candy bracelets as their standard “Ah, quit whining” prescription. Medics are also wary of personnel complaining of nonspecific symptoms like pain or bleeding.
“Blood can’t fool an Army doc,” said Estrada. “We know a malingerer when we see one.”
Tripler managers consulted with the Department of Veterans Affairs for best practices on admissions and appointment scheduling for in-patient care. Estrada said that Tripler will implement the VA model because “if we wait long enough, many patients will just go away and heal, or die, like nature intended. Can’t argue with God’s will!”
Once admitted to a hospital, potential coronavirus patients will receive the kind of top-level care that is the hallmark of military medicine. Surgeon Rhonda Wagner said, “I expect many patients with virus-like symptoms will need major organ removal or gonadal amputation, just to be safe.”
Area hospitals will be calling in male doctors to deal with women patients, because men are best at hearing their symptoms and explaining why they’re not truly ill. The special seminar, “Interpreting Corona symptoms in women: It’s probably just ‘female problems’—Wink!” will enhance doctor-patient communications. A panel of four male doctors will lead the seminar.
Estrada says his pledge to use, “all the skills that my mentor Dr. Kevorkian taught me at Guyana’s Jonestown Medical School” sums up the military medicine’s commitment to preventing the coronavirus.
At press time, Tripler AMC was also considering how treating coronavirus with excess black mold spores available from family housing.