Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF-A) in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) represent the first major, sustained wars in which emergency physicians (EPs) fully participated as an integrated part of the military’s health system. EPs proved invaluable in the deployments, and they frequently used the full spectrum of trauma and medical care skills. The roles EPs served expanded over the years of the conflicts and demonstrated the unique skill set of emergency medicine (EM) training. EPs supported elite special operations units, served in medical command positions, and developed and staffed flying intensive care units. EPs have brought their combat experience home to civilian practice. This narrative review summarizes the history, contributions, and lessons learned by EPs during OEF-A/OIF and describes changes to daily clinical practice of EM derived from the combat environment.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine