Divider Bar

The Operations and Development Branch (O&DB) is responsible for the day to day hyperbaric chamber operation of over 800 patient treatment dives per year. This includes the operation, inspection, and maintenance of two multiplace chambers, one monoplace chamber, and all related ancillary equipment. The O&DB establishes safety policies and procedures for Air Force hyperbaric chambers and use of ancillary equipment (compressors, fire suppression systems, gas analyzers, environmental and chamber controllers). We provide twenty-four hour worldwide technical support and consultation on hyperbaric equipment and operational issues to Air Force operational chambers and DOD clinical hyperbaric facilities. We participate in developing plans for new hyperbaric facilities and related equipment. Designing and fabricating special treatment devices are another area the branch provides assistance. The OD&B conducts inspections on Air Force operational and DOD clinical hyperbaric chambers to ensure compliance with safety codes.

The personnel within the branch provide consultation service and on-site staff assistance visits to worldwide USAF Operational and Clinical Hyperbaric facilities. O&DB personnel provide support to the USAF School of Aerospace Medicine through curriculum development and instruction in all facets of USAFSAM sponsored hyperbaric medicine courses. Students range from newly trained technical school graduates to physicians.

The Chief, Operations and Development Branch performs as the safety director, ensuring that all chamber operations involving patient treatment, emergency treatment and evaluations are carried out in a safe and efficient manner. He leads and manages all branch personnel, providing an environment and opportunity for professional growth. He provides professional consultation service and on-site staff assistance visits to worldwide U.S. Air force operational and clinical hyperbaric facilities. Coordinates with other branch chiefs in planning and conducting medical research and equipment development. The branch is divided into four separate operating sections; 1. Equipment Test and Development, 2. Supply and Logistics, 3. Maintenance and Scheduling, 4. Administration.

The NCOIC, Equipment Test and Development is responsible for the test, research and development of equipment used inside and outside Air Force hyperbaric chambers. O&DB supports the division’s role as the DOD lead agency for clinical hyperbaric medicine by the testing, evaluating and developing of technologies that advance all areas of hyperbaric health care. O&DP modifies and fabricates special equipment used in equipment development and test procedures. Coordinates between depot and operational hyperbaric facilities on the installation of new hyperbaric systems.

The NCOIC, Supply and logistics is responsible for the planning, coordination, and supervision for all phases of hyperbaric supply. This includes the tracking, monitoring, and proper allocation of supply and equipment funds annually. Performs as the division equipment custodian, responsible for over $5M of unique medical and laboratory equipment. Acts as an information consultant for DOD and other affiliated HBO facilities on specialized supplies and equipment used in hyperbaric operations. Coordinates with manufacturers and venders on acquiring unique supplies and equipment needed for hyperbaric treatment and research applications.

The NCOIC, Maintenance and Scheduling is responsible for managing and coordinating all maintenance and inspection activities. Must troubleshoot, repair, and modify, and perform all maintenance and inspections on three hyperbaric treatment chambers and all ancillary equipment. Supervises and directs the work of two civilian maintenance contractors. Responsible for inspecting and repairing all life support equipment. Develops and coordinates daily and on-call dive schedules. Prepares and maintains all documentation on inspection, maintenance, and repair procedures. Coordinates and schedules specialized maintenance and repairs with the precision measurement equipment laboratory, base civil engineers, and depot level maintenance personnel.

The NCOIC, Administration is responsible for planning and coordinating all phases of branch administration. Coordinates and maintains all paperwork for supplemental dive team members and staff to include physicals, hazardous duty incentive orders, military pay orders, training certificates and record of dive times. Prepares monthly activities report and monthly report to higher headquarters. Manages division leave program. Manages annual billings of Third Party Outpatient Collection System and Veterans Affairs contract.

The two civilian contract technicians perform tasks necessary to the installation and maintenance of man rated and auxiliary pressure vessels, breathing equipment, fire suppression system, atmospheric conditioning system, communication system, chamber monitoring and alarm system, and any special medical equipment required. Installs, maintains, overhauls, troubleshoots, repairs and/or modify hyperbaric chamber components.

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