Ian Bernard works at a flight that may be compared to a police department’s investigative unit. They try to find perpetrators wreaking havoc on their victims but at a microscopic level.
He is part of the 10th Medical Group’s laboratory flight at Air Force Academy, Colorado, which provides accurate, reliable and timely diagnoses to providers concerning patient tissue and cellular specimens.
“We use ‘cradle to grave’ scientific processes to create a quality microscopic slide for pathologists’ to diagnose,” said Bernard, anatomic pathology technical supervisor and a histopathology technician.
As histopathology technician, Bernard grosses and dissects 98 percent of all specimens received at the flight. He also addresses all technical, procedural and quality issues as the technical advisor.
Recently, Bernard spent hours working through chain of custody procedures to receive original specimens for follow up Air Force analysis. He also sent 70 slides in single block to the Joint Pathology Center for second review and validation of network results.
His efforts didn’t go unnoticed as he was recently named as Air Force Medical Service’s Trusted Care Hero.
“I’m honored yet humbled to be recognized for things I feel passionate about and that are inherent,” Bernard said. “I attribute these internalized values in part from my 24 years of Air Force active service as well as my spiritual beliefs.”
According to the Air Force Medical Service’s website, the Trusted Care Hero program recognizes medical personnel, both Airmen and civilian, who embody the medical service’s mantra, “Trusted Care, Anywhere.”
Lt. Col. Mark Hubbell, laboratory medical director, said Bernard’s professionalism is based on his strong underlying value system of approaching each individual or task as someone he wants to serve and help.
“He truly represents the Air Force core values and he has a ‘team first’ and ‘patient safety’ mentality,” Hubbell said. “It definitely reflects positively in his work. There have been multiple examples of how his foresight and attention to detail has helped prevent patient error and improve our systems.”
He said having someone like Bernard, with his great attitude, is very contagious helps raise the level of care for the patients and each other.
“We are proud and happy for this well-deserved recognition,” Hubbell said.
The Trusted Care Hero program was developed by the Air Force Medical Serve to recognize outstanding medical care providers across the service.
“Being a Trusted Care Hero means that in my circle of influence, which is the anatomic pathology, I’m a leader and champion for our pathology lab’s customer service, excellence, quality and patient safety,” Bernard said. “Because of this, all our customers can trust our service and product the first time,” Bernard said.
Visit www.airforcemedicine.af.mil for more information on the Trusted Care Hero program.