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COVID-19

Last updated: 11 August, 2021 at 4:22 p.m. MST

COVID-19 UPDATES

For the most updated information regarding COVID-19 and guidelines for personnel assigned to Ellsworth Air Force Base, go to our Facebook page here.

  • Ellsworth AFB is currently in HPCON Bravo:
    • We have seen a significant rise in COVID numbers and metrics on Ellsworth AFB and in the local area.  Consequently, I am declaring HPCON Bravo.  This e-mail is to inform you of the following COVID mitigation changes.
      • Mask Wear:  Masks will be worn by all personnel, regardless of vaccination status, in all facilities on the installation and when unable to maintain social distance outdoors.  Active Duty members, regardless of vaccination status, are required to follow this policy off base (ie. mask wear is required when in indoor public facilities).  Exemptions include actively exercising while maintaining distance IAW CDC guidelines and for brief periods of time when eating or drinking while maintaining distance IAW CDC guidelines
      • Social Distance:  Maintain social distance indoors and outdoors.  Units are responsible for defining the appropriate number of people allowed in work centers and event space based on the ability to social distance (ie. reduce meeting size, meet virtual, telework, etc.).
      • Sturgis Motorcycle Rally:  Active Duty personnel may not enter indoor venues in the city of Sturgis from 6 to 15 Aug.  Active Duty personnel who volunteer at the rally must be fully vaccinated. 
  • View the 28th Bomb Wing COVID-19 mitigation policy, updated 11 August, here.

THINGS TO KNOW FOR COVID-19 PROCEDURES AT ELLSWORTH

While COVID-19 continues within the local area, the deterrence mission continues. The 28th Bomb Wing is prepared to continue to meet and exceed mission objectives, with some changes to procedures.

  • Ellsworth leadership is continually monitoring the situation and working closely with the South Dakota Department of Health to coordinate prevention and response efforts in the local area. People experiencing flu-like symptoms, such as fever and coughing, should call TRICARE's 24-hour Nurse Advice Line at 1-800-874-2273.
  • The 28th MDG offers the COVID vaccine to Tricare beneficiaries 12 years of age and older. Call 605-385-6700 and select option 1 to schedule an appointment.
  • Proper hygiene procedures and preventative measures, like hand washing, are critical to preventing the spread of viruses and maintaining 100 percent mission readiness. Measures are in place to protect personnel and continue mission accomplishment. 
  • All Department of Air Force personnel are encouraged to follow Force Health Protection and CDC guidance to avoid contracting or spreading respiratory illnesses. Contingency plans are in place to educate and safeguard military, civilian personnel and their family members in preventing a wide-spread outbreak.
  • Upon entry to the base, members should hold their ID card, showing the barcode on the back side to the Security Forces gate guard. The guard will scan members in before continuing on to the base. This new process will help reduce the amount of contact between persons.
  • Social distancing is highly recommended by the CDC, which means maintaining a 'six-foot rule' of distance from others.

This is an ongoing situation and Ellsworth leadership will continue to push updated information via our base website at www.ellsworth.af.mil, the 28th Bomb Wing Air Force Connect app and Ellsworth Air Force Base's Facebook Page.

PROTECT YOURSELF

CDC Recommends

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
    • CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
    • Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

For more information to protect yourself, friends and family from unknowingly spreading diseases, visit the CDC website here.

TRAVEL INFORMATION

28th Bomb Wing Guidance Memorandum on Pass Restrictions can be found here.

Current restricted travel information can be found on the CDC website here, or on the Dept. of State travel site here.

DOD GUIDELINES

Department of Defense Issues Guidelines to Personnel on Coronavirus

We encourage all DOD personnel to refer to the guidance below, as well as the CDC guidance, and take precautions to stay healthy. Information from the Department of State can be found here: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/novel-coronavirus-hubei-province--china.html

Supplement 1 (Jan. 30, 2020): Force Health Protection Guidance for the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak

Supplement 2 (Feb. 25, 2020): Force Health Protection Guidance for Commanders' Risk-Based Measured Responses

For more DOD-related guidance on the Coronavirus, visit: https://health.mil/News/In-the-Spotlight/coronavirus

28th Bomb Wing COVID-19 Mitigation Policy

Current COVID Mitigation Policy, updated August 11, 2021.

CONTACT INFO

Ellsworth AFB
Medical Appointments: (605) 385-6700
Public Health: (605) 385-3383
TRICARE Service: 1 (800) 988-9378

Other Numbers:
Emergency: 911
24hr Nurse Advice Line: 1 (800) 874-2273

Useful Websites:
TRICARE
TRICARE West
TRICARE Online
TRICARE Nurse Advice Line

Beneficiary Vaccine Town Halls

COVID Vaccine Information Brochure for 19 Mar 2021

 

COVID VACCINE Pre-Screening Form

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