Title: US armed forces medical operations other than war

Authors: Rasa Silenas, Stephen G. Waller, Adanto R. D'Amore, Paul K. Carlton

Addresses: Medical Director, Office of Homeland Security, Texas A&M University Health Sciences Center, PO Box 35399, Brooks City Base, TX 78235-5399, USA. ' UPMC Diabetes Outreach Clinic Director, Wilford Hall Medical Center, 2200 Bergquist Drive, Suite 1, Lackland AFB, TX 78236, USA. ' Inspector General, 59th Medical Wing, 2200 Bergquist Drive, Suite 1, Lackland AFB, TX 78236, USA. ' Director, Office of Homeland Security Texas A&M University Health Sciences Center 301 Tarrow Street College Station, TX 77840, USA

Abstract: Expertise in combat healthcare planning, operations and technology translates well into domestic and international humanitarian health relief. The US military medical services have extensive daily activities in public health and medicine that are integrated with civilian organisations, and are related to health research, prevention of disease and healthcare rather than to combat operations. These activities are authorised by US law, and they support, rather than supersede, civilian authority. On US soil, the National Guard and Northern Command have specific responsibilities in disaster response. All of the services conduct international activities, including humanitarian medical missions and disaster relief. Besides direct public health and medical services, relief includes support such as airlift and logistics. These activities are effective instruments of diplomacy, creating the hope that military medical operations other than war can be instruments of peace.

Keywords: international cooperation; disaster response; disaster relief; humanitarian relief; infectious diseases; public health services; airlifts; logistics; military medicine; outreach; patient transportation; professional education; relief work; US military medical services; USA; United States; health research; disease prevention; healthcare.

DOI: 10.1504/IJRAM.2008.020414

International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management, 2008 Vol.9 No.4, pp.367 - 375

Published online: 22 Sep 2008 *

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