Focus on military medicine

Operational Medicine Symposium 2020
Operational Medicine Symposium 2020

The 2nd annual Operational Medicine Symposium, organised by Defense Strategies Institute, brought together over 250 military medical professionals, with participation from across all services, for two days of plenary sessions, panel discussions, tech talks and product demonstrations. Erica Noreika gives AirMed&Rescue an insight into the event

The 2nd annual Operational Medicine Symposium, organised by Defense Strategies Institute, brought together over 250 military medical professionals, with participation from across all services, for two days of plenary sessions, panel discussions, tech talks and product demonstrations. Erica Noreika gives AirMed&Rescue an insight into the event

This year, senior-level speakers at the symposium discussed advancements in combat casualty care, medical logistics, human performance, telemedicine and more.

Session topics included: Examining how the changing operating environment will impact operational medicine capabilities, Ensuring military medical forces are ready and equipped to care for the warfighter in expeditionary environments, Highlighting current innovative technologies aimed at improving medic readiness and capability, Human performance and its role in improving operational medicine and healthcare, and Preparing to administer prolonged field care in contested environment.

Day one

Day one of the Symposium began with speakers defining the changing operational environment and highlighting how the medical force is preparing for this future fight. Presentations outlined visions for a modern medical force equipped to save lives in contested, cyber degraded, and distributed expeditionary operations. Additionally, discussions stressed the importance of embracing evolving technology and ensuring medical forces are ready to deliver quality care at any time and in any environment. In-depth analysis of key advancements in virtual health, human performance, and warfighter rehabilitation further showcased US efforts to modernise medical capabilities in preparation for the future fight.

Day two

Day two

The second day of the Symposium focused on innovative medical R&D initiatives underway across the Defense Health Agency and all four services. Speakers stressed the importance of achieving DoD modernisation goals, especially in the context of warfighter survivability. Presentations offered perspectives into future medical support activities intent on prolonging the ‘golden hour’, and detailed critical technological advancements in artificial intelligence, medical countermeasures, medical supply delivery, and soldier performance.

Networking at the Symposium

Networking at the Symposium

Thirteen sponsors and exhibitors showcased their technologies at this year’s Symposium, through exhibits and speaking engagements. Day two culminated in a cocktail reception and comedy show sponsored by Medweb and this year’s diamond sponsor, Leidos.

Combat Medical, a platinum sponsor of this year’s symposium, spoke about their innovative military medical technologies, during their 30-minute session regarding Requirements-based medicine: Industries’ unique ability to solve medical capability gaps. Combat Medical empowers medical operators of all skills to reduce pre-hospital mortality and eliminate preventable deaths everywhere tactically possible by developing and delivering critical products that simplify tactical medicine from the point of injury through evacuation.

North American Rescue, an exhibitor at this year’s symposium, showcased their innovative medical/rescue products, which address the full spectrum of operational medicine, ranging from airway management, haemorrhage control and vascular access to high-threat extraction, trauma management and patient evacuation.