Dear Team Wright-Patterson,
As I have mentioned previously, we have been preparing for the eventuality of having positive COVID-19 cases on Wright-Patterson. As you are all aware, the first case hit our community on March 21.
When taking this reality into account and the situation unfolding around us, we must take prudent action in order to protect the force and our community.
I have been continuously updated by my Public Health Emergency Officer (PHEO) of the situation on our installation involving COVID-19 that now requires immediate action.
Based on the PHEO’s recommendations and the results of ongoing investigation and situational monitoring, I am declaring a Public Health Emergency in accordance with applicable Air Force instructions. This declaration ends automatically 30 days from today unless it is renewed and re-reported, or terminated sooner by myself or a senior commander in the chain of command.
Based on information provided by the Public Health Emergency Officer and medical personnel, I will identify, confirm and control this public health emergency, utilizing all the necessary means outlined in the Air Force instruction. As needed, I am issuing guidance that affects the installation personnel and property, and other individuals working, residing or visiting the installation. This may include closing base facilities, restricting movement or implementing quarantine for select individuals.
While the declaration does not close the base, Wright-Patterson operations will now be limited to mission essential work functions and base services for life, health and sustenance only. As a result:
• Effective immediately, Wright-Patterson AFB will transition to HPCON Charlie. HPCON Charlie is consistent with sustained community transmission and provides recommendations to the installation commander regarding limited access to the base, limiting travel and re-scoping, modifying or potentially cancelling gatherings exercises, services and events.
• Daily operations will shift to mission essential personnel only. Mission essential personnel are those civilian, military and contractors (designated by the contract statement of work) personnel who are required to work in order to maintain essential base services or critical missions. Mission essential personnel will be determined by the individual unit commander/director and can be further defined and determined day-to-day based on mission requirements at a given time.
Commanders/directors should identify mission essential employees who are required to work “on-base” to meet their mission and use recall procedures and other methods to direct additional appropriate reporting. Commanders/directors should restrict the number of mission essential personnel working “on-base” to the absolute minimum required based on current mission essential tasks and functions.
All other mission essential personnel should telework to minimize number of personnel on base. If no telework duties can be assigned, due to the nature of the position, then weather and safety leave may be granted.
• For manpower efficiency and to better protect our first responders during this event, the following entry control points will remain open: Area A: 1A (commissary gate), 12A (Air Force Materiel Command Gate), 26A (for commercial traffic only), Area B: 19B (National Road gate).
• Commanders and directors are directed to maintain maximum teleworking operations and conduct business via virtual meetings to limit interactions and comply with social distancing. Users should follow previously established instructions on how to best access network resources.
• The commissary and Exchange (AAFES) will remain open, as will limited food service operations across the base. As previously directed, self-serve and dine-in options have been discontinued.
Base leadership and the PHEO will continue to coordinate activities and share information with national, state and local officials responsible for public health and public safety to ensure our response is appropriate for this public health emergency. The information that is shared may include personally identifiable health information only to the extent necessary to protect the public health and safety.
A list of COVID-19 symptoms can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's website ( www.CDC.gov ). If you are a military member, dependent or medical beneficiary and you or your family begin to present symptoms, please DO NOT GO to the Wright-Patterson Medical Center without first calling the appointment line at 937-522-2778.
If you are enrolled off-base, please contact your primary care provider.
Finally, if you have been in contact with anyone presenting symptoms, we are asking you to inform your supervisor or commander and also contact 88th Medical Group Public Health to determine what procedures need to be implemented.
For the most up-to-date information during this dynamic time, including the status of activities and services on Wright-Patterson AFB, please reference the 88 ABW web page ( https://www.wpafb.af.mil/coronavirus ), or the Wright-Patterson AFB Facebook page ( https://www.facebook.com/wpafb/).
The intent of this policy is to ensure we can collectively take care of our Airmen and their families while allowing leadership to make informed decisions on how to continue conducting their missions to best of their ability within these confines. These measures are critical to defeating this virus and returning to normal operations. Base leadership will continue to work together to assess the situation and respond accordingly. Please utilize your chains of command to determine how you specifically will comply with these changes.
You are our most important priority; the health, well-being and safety of your family members and those that call Wright-Patterson home and those that work here is our utmost priority.
We are strong; we are resilient and together we can and will get through anything.
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