Fort Drum nurses dress up to test soldiers for COVID-19

Updated: Sep. 20, 2020 at 10:30 PM EDT
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FORT DRUM, N.Y. (WWNY) - A group of Fort Drum Nurses is suiting up to test 10th Mountain Division Soldiers for COVID-19.

Mary Paul is one of the nurses volunteering to administer COVID-19 tests to soldiers on Fort Drum.

“I think after a certain point you just want to do something bigger than yourself. So to be on this side of history with the first great pandemic of the 21st century, you might of as well being on the helping side of it,” said Paul, a nurse at the BOWE Army Medical Home.

More than 3,000 soldiers and family members have been tested on post since March. Some of the tests at BOWE Army Medical Home are for units deploying and soldiers moving to a new duty station. Other tests are for soldiers who have COVID-19 symptoms.

“I want to share and help the community with my skills as an RN. I didn’t second guess being part of this team,” said Fulgencio Solar.

Cpt. Michelle Napper says it’s an honor to be in charge of the operation.

“This is definitely important work here with how scary it is. We are not only providing safety for soldiers for the instillation for our soldiers, but for the surrounding communities as well,” said Cpt. Napper, a nurse practitioner at the Fort Drum MEDDAC.

The nurses also help treat those who have tested positive for COVID-19.

“Whether it be Ibuprofen, Tyenol- If Captain Napper actually has to prescribe a medication, in the event we do have a very sick patient, the rooms are equipped to have them stay here for a few hours. So in the event we had to issue medications we would do that here as well,” said Paul.

The BOWE Clinic is also expanding to serve soldiers, their families, and retired military who are experiencing a fever or respiratory symptoms.

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