Department of Defense, DRA Will Host the Delta Wellness Mission 2021 to Meet Healthcare NeedsFebruary 10, 2021
10-day medical mission will occur July 8-18th in Lake Providence; two additional sites in Arkansas and Mississippi.
CLARKSDALE, MS – The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and Delta Regional Authority (DRA) will hold a medical mission in Lake Providence, LA from July 8-18, 2021. Through a partnership with DoD and the U.S Military’s reserve forces, DRA supports the Innovative Readiness Training (IRT) program to bring medical, dental, and optical care to Delta residents in need of quality healthcare at no cost to the patients.
“A community’s economic competitiveness is strengthened by the health and well-being of its workforce,” said DRA Spokeswoman Shawna Blair. “The Delta Regional Authority is proud to partner with the U.S. Department of Defense to implement IRT missions, which provide immediate healthcare services to our residents who need it most. The unique partnership, which includes the participation of Joint military forces of both active and reserve compontents as well as additional support within our host communities, executes IRT missions at no cost to those treated.”
IRT is a collaborative program that improves military readiness by providing trained military medical personnel with in-field emergency response training while simultaneously providing quality healthcare services to communities throughout the Delta region. By utilizing their extensive resources, the military is able to meet some of the region’s most urgent healthcare needs. Among the services provided during IRT missions are basic medical exams, eye exams, single lens prescriptions glasses, and dental services.
“This is an extraordinary opportunity for our communities and military populations to come together, especially in a time of such hardship, to work and provide healthcare, well-being, and facilitate military deployment readiness training,” said Lt. Col. Michelle Underwood, NMANG.
Host communities provide local expertise, host facilities, and on-the-ground support, while military units contribute personnel and training resources. DRA works closely with Delta communities and DoD to assist with the application process as well as planning and implementation for the 10-day medical mission.
“In 2017, I saw firsthand, the DRA – IRT’s Tri-Parish mission in St John, Assumption and Tangipahoa parishes,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said. “Patients had access to dental, optical and preventative medical screenings at no cost to the patient. The mission was a $1 million heath care shot in the arm for those communities. The need was great before, and now during this war against COVID-19, it’s vital for the recovery of this distressed region. I am grateful to the DRA and our Military troops for providing this no cost training in East Carroll parish and surrounding area during our time of great need.”
“From July 8 - 18th, the Delta Wellness Mission will be in Lake Providence, LA. This unique partnership will bring medical, dental and optical care to Delta residents that are uninsured and in need of quality healthcare at no cost to patients,” said Dr. Bill Cassidy.
“The Innovative Readiness Training program will provide crucial health care services to the residents of Lake Providence,” said U.S. Senator John Kennedy. “I’m grateful to the men and women of the military and the Delta Regional Authority for serving the people of northeast Louisiana.”
The Lake Providence IRT mission site will be located at General Trass High School. Two additional IRT mission sites will occur simultaneously as part of the 2021 Delta Wellness Mission: in Greenville, MS and Lake Village, AR. Please visit IRT.defense.gov for more information.
About the Delta Regional Authority
The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to promote and encourage the economic development of the lower Mississippi River Delta and Alabama Black Belt. DRA invests in projects supporting transportation infrastructure, basic public infrastructure, workforce training, and business development. DRA’s mission is to help create jobs, build communities, and improve the lives of those who reside in the 252 counties and parishes of the eight-state region.
DRA Media Contact:
Director of Communications and Public Engagement