The treatment of combat casualties starts on the scene. Depending on the nature and severity of the wound or sickness, the casualty may be treated and returned to duty or may be stabilized for evacuation through one or more levels (echelons) of military medical facilities. The worldwide integrated system of combat medical transportation, treatment and support is an outstanding accomplishment of military medicine.
Medic treats an infantryman injured in the Ardennes, Battle of the Bulge, December 1944-January 1945.
The treatment and evacuation of casualties from the battlefield through all the echelons of care follows precise doctrine worked out over decades of combat experience. The goal is always to maximize the care and potential for return to duty within the scope of available resources. If the casualty can be treated successfully, treatment is given. If not, the casualty is stabilized for evacuated to the next echelon.
The mission is always difficult and changing circumstances often derail the best laid plans. Still, the military medical profession has been remarkably successful over the years in constantly improving rates of recovery even from the most egregious wartime injuries.
The 14th Combat Support Hospital, Fort Benning, GA, organizes, trains, deploys, and provides command and control of hospital forces, which provides comprehensive, high quality Level IV combat health support in support to world-wide contingency operations.
This section describes how medical treatment and evacuation works, from immediate aid by a medic on the battlefield, through the evacuation chain to comprehensive treatment far from combat. Clink on the link to reach any topic on the list.
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