COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- U.S. Northern Command based at Peterson Air Force Base is now leading the Department of Dense in COVID-19 operations and response.
Already NORTHCOM has ordered 1000 Air Force and Navy medical personnel to New York City to help with the crisis there. General Terrence O'Shaughnessy, the commander for both NORAD and NORTHCOM, says it has also deployed two Naval hospital ships and three army field hospitals which include the 627th hospital center from Fort Carson.
"We are treating this like a military campaign," O'Shaughnessy said.
The response has been quick. Now, the General tells us the next crucial job is determining where to go next. "Next week is going to be very difficult and challenging," he said. "We are seeing peaks in a couple of key areas, specifically in the northeast."
However, with Colorado being one of the hardest-hit states, NORTHCOM's headquarters at Peterson AFB is also going through major changes to keep vital members safe from the virus.
"We've applied social distancing at the headquarters itself so we are maintaining separation," O'Shaughnessy says, "We've actually used a couple of extra buildings that we didn't use before to disperse our force."
That includes isolating members at Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station. The General says those members will live inside in bunkers until the pandemic improves. "Our team has been working incredibly hard; the sacrifices they and their families are making with separation is extreme but it's all for an incredibly important cause."