Maintaining the ANZAC tradition
Private Laura McIntrye is part of 2nd Health Support Battalion within the New Zealand Defence Force.
She is also one of 22 New Zealand nurses, doctors, dentists and environmental health officers providing essential medical support in the primary health care team (PHCT) at Camp Rocky, and the field elements around the Shoalwater Bay training area.
“I joined the Defence Force three years ago as a medic to have an adventure, see the world and get paid to train,” Private McIntrye said
“This is my second trip to Australia, last year I was here playing hockey for defence sport. I also had the chance to go to Vanuatu, the United Kingdom and Antarctica.”
Private McIntrye has found it easy to work with Australians. “Their procedures are similar to ours.”
Being a joint exercise, Hamel has created a buzz with the media. Private McIntrye was keen to promote the New Zealand Defence Force to ABC Capricornia breakfast radio host Jackie Mackay.
Private McIntrye commented on how she was looking forward to working with and supporting the Australians during her time here.
Corporal Regan Dranfield from Hobart is part of the 3rd Health Support Battalion has enjoyed working with the New Zealand medics and finding out what equipment they use and how they do business.
“New Zealand Defence Force is quite similar. It’s great to be able to work with, and learn from other nation’s army personnel.” Corporal Dranfield said.
Exercise Hamel provides an excellent opportunity to work with other nations. For the Australian medical team, working with their trans-Tasman during Exercise Hamel is good preparation for when they might need to work together to provide humanitarian relief, or in disaster and operational situations.
The Officer Commanding of the New Zealand contingent, Major Julia Fortune said, “Exercise Hamel allows the defence forces to maintain their long standing connection and tradition.”
“Interoperability is the key. When training together in exercises like Hamel, it lets us know how the other works and our capabilities, before we have to work together in a combined situation; be it a natural disaster or operational deployment” she said.