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NEWS | Nov. 9, 2020

Army Reserve's new command surgeon focuses on medically ready force

By Maria D. James Army Resilience Directorate

The Deployment Health Assessment Program (DHAP) and the U.S. Army Reserve Command welcomed its newest command surgeon, Col. Kathleen M. Flocke, to Fort Bragg, North Carolina, this September.

“I’m excited to work with the Army Reserves and ensure that we provide … the medically ready force that the Army needs to fight and win on the battlefield of the future,” said Flocke.

Before Flocke’s arrival, Col. David G. Parker served as acting command surgeon. Parker explained the role of the command surgeon as it relates to DHAP. “Surgeons' Directorate has mission command over the DHAP team. We ensure they are appropriately staffed and resourced to carry out their mission,” said Parker, adding that the command surgeon is a member of the commanding general's special staff.

“DHAP is one of the programs that we have oversight over. It is a critical program and step in keeping our forces ready,” said Flocke, who sees opportunities for improvements, like increasing the completion of Post Deployment Health Re-assessments (PDHRA).

“Less than 25% of PDHRAs that need to be done are completed, and half of those are completed on the suggested timeline,” said Flocke. “We are really doing our troops a disservice as this is our opportunity to catch any issues that developed as a result of the deployment, including BH (behavioral health).”

Before assuming her current role, Flocke served as the Joint Task Force-Bravo command surgeon at Soto Cano Air Base, Honduras. She served as command surgeon at 1st Theater Sustainment Command at Fort Bragg from 2015 to 2017, and Deputy Commander for Clinical Services at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, from 2017 to 2019. Flocke began her medical career in 2005 as a staff family physician at Fort Carson, Colorado. From 2010 to 2014, Flocke served as battalion surgeon for the 97th Civil Affairs Battalion at Fort Bragg, and in the same role with the Warrior Transition Unit from 2014 to 2015.

She received a bachelor’s degree from Siena College in Biology, with a concentration in Environmental Studies, in Loudonville, New York. She graduated from Albany Medical College in Albany, New York, completing her residency at Palmetto Richland Memorial Hospital in Columbia, South Carolina, and is family medicine board certified.

Her honors and awards for service include a Defense Meritorious Service Medal; a Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, an Army Commendation Medal with an oak leaf cluster; a Joint Service Commendation Medal with one oak leaf cluster; an Army Achievement Medal; and a Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.