LANDOVER, Md — Ryan D. McCarthy, secretary of the Army, Lt. Gen. Daniel Hokanson, director of the Army National Guard, and Congressmen Anthony G. Brown joined Army Maj. Gen. Timothy E. Gowen, adjutant general for Maryland, during a visit to Prince Georges County COVID-19 screening site located at FedEx Field Mar. 31.
Brown, McCarthy and Hokanson visited the screening site to learn how the National Guard can assist civilian agencies in the nation’s fight against the spread of COVID-19.
“I want to thank General Gowen for the outstanding work that he and his team are doing here at FedEx Field in Prince Georges County,” said Brown. “They are setting up the infrastructure so that our public health officials can serve the residents of Prince Georges County and the surrounding area. We would not be able to do this as effectively if not for the Maryland National Guard.”
The 1297th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion assembled about 12 tents where medical specialists can work. MDNG medics are supporting Prince George’s County Department of Health at the site. The 115th Military Police Battalion are supporting the county police department to secure the site and the MDNG is also providing fuel for generators and water.
McCarthy expressed his gratitude to the congressman for supporting the National Guard gaining approval to serve under Title 32 authority for the state’s COVID-19 response. Title 32 is federally funded, allowing National Guard members to receive equal benefits and entitlements as the active military components. The Governor also remains in control of the state’s National Guard under Title 32 authority.
“On my way out here I had to opportunity to talk to Governor Hogan over the phone,” said McCarthy. “He’s been very aggressive [in the response efforts] and hitting [the support] on all cylinders.”
McCarthy began the visit at the hand washing station before entering the screening site.
“The Maryland National Guard couldn’t be more proud to serve our communities during this challenging time,” said Army Maj. Gen. Timothy E. Gowen, adjutant general for Maryland. “Our presence in the community along with our capabilities make us perfectly suited to help our neighbors get through this. We’re all in this together.”
Gowen spoke with Hokanson on the overall support the MDNG has provided since initially activated Mar. 12.
“It is going to take a lot of discipline and focus in leadership of soldiers like Maj. Gen. Gowen and other soldiers to get us through this fight,” Hokanson said.
More than 1,600 Maryland National Guard members are actively supporting Maryland’s response to combat the spread of COVID-19. The MDNG is working closely with state and local agencies providing medical augmentation, transportation, food and medical equipment distribution, and more.
The site began taking patients yesterday and is open Monday, Wednesday, and Friday by appointment. To schedule an appointment call 301-8836627.