445th ASTS officer voted top physician by peers

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Joel McCullough
  • 445th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Maj. Michael Policastro, officer in-charge of Critical Care Air Transport at the 445th Aeromedical Staging Squadron, is not only looked up to by the Airmen in his squadron but also by his peers in his civilian job as an emergency medicine physician and toxicologist in Cincinnati, Ohio.


For the third year in a row, Cincinnati Magazine named Major Policastro as one of the top emergency medicine physicians in Cincinnati, a recognition bestowed upon him thanks to his peers at Bethesda North Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio.


“My favorite part of working in emergency medicine is that every day is different,” said Major Policastro. “There is no routine day. Being able to intervene at a critical juncture of somebody’s life and being able to have the capacity to intervene in a life or death situation is very rewarding.”


When asked why he thought Policastro was voted as one of the top physicians three years in a row, Col. Jeffrey Beery, commander of the 445th ASTS, immediately answered, “I think it’s his positive image. He has this drive about him that just makes things happen. He has a positive inspirational nature. He’s intense.”


Colonel Beery and Major Policastro not only work alongside each other at the 445th ASTS, the colonel also sends a lot of his critical patients from his personal practice to Major Policastro in Cincinnati.


“He’s a physician’s physician. A doctor who doctors really admire and call upon,” Colonel Beery said.


As a reservist, Major Policastro carries that same endeavor he has in his civilian sector over to his military commitments as the officer in-charge of the CCAT team; a medical team consisting of a physician, nurse and a respiratory therapist that care for the severely wounded. The major led the 445th Airlift Wing to become one of Air Force Reserve Command’s fully capable CCAT teams. In just six months as the officer in-charge, Major Policastro was able to make this possible.


“CCAT is a very, very well respected entity that has high standards so to be validated with a currency in that is humbling. It makes me better. The Air Force has very high standards for its CCAT teams and maintaining that currency is paramount for the Air Force.”


Reflecting back on his medical career on both the civilian side and military side, Major Policastro said he has an advantage to having access to both military and civilian medical training.


“The leadership skills and medical training that I have received in the Air Force augments my civilian practice, which augments my military practice, said Major Policastro. “It’s an absolute fact that I am better as a result of joining the Air Force. My training for CCAT has made me a better physician. The Air Force has made me a better physician.”


(Stacy Vaughn contributed to this story)