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Integrate military and civilian trauma care, says report

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A U.S. soldier undergoes surgery in New Guinea in World War II.

Writers of a report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine are asking the government to integrate military and civilian trauma care to address our era of mass shootings and other terror attacks.

The  authors write that up to 30,000 Americans die each year of traumatic injuries that they might have survived had they received better emergency care.

“Both the military and civilian sectors have made impressive progress and important innovations in trauma care, but there are serious limitations in the diffusion of those gains from location to location,” Donald Berwick, M.D., president emeritus of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and chairman of the committee that wrote the report, said in a statement. “Even as the successes have saved many lives, the disparities have cost many lives.”

Dr. Berwick also served as acting director of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

The authors proposed that between wars, military hospitals  also operate as civilian trauma centers—to share lessons from the battlefield and to maintain the military trauma teams’  readiness for the next conflict.

To read the Wall Street Journal article on this, please hit this link.


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