KAUNAS, Lithuania - The Lithuanian Military Medical Service welcomed a team of four U.S. Army medical professionals to share knowledge on medical logistics and conduct a medical simulation in Kaunas, Lithuania, from 19-23 September. The global health engagement enabled soldiers from multiple nations to act coherently and effectively to achieve strategic and tactical objectives regarding the care of wounded battlefield soldiers and maintaining a fighting force.
U.S. Army Cpt. Patrick Lewis, a medical logistics planner with 30th Medical Brigade, served as one of the subject matter experts on medical logistics. When asked about the value of working with Lithuanian forces, he offered his insights.
“Interoperability is incredibly important within combat medicine because it ensures best practices for patient care under fire and tactical field care are shared across services and with partner nations,” Lewis said. “In a deployed setting, U.S. forces may be supporting a Lithuanian infantry platoon or a battalion aid station. If we are familiar and comfortable with how each other operates, it benefits the patient to ensure a seamless evacuation and continuity of care.”
U.S. and Lithuanian counterparts shared best practices on the standardization of battle aid station and ambulance equipment, and demonstrated how each nation provided clinical practice and standards on simulated complex battlefield injuries. The culminating event featured trauma lanes focused on tactical combat casualty care which assessed Lithuanian medics on the treatment of a mock casualty from point of injury with evacuation to the battle aid station.
“Multi-national engagements, if done well, strengthen all countries involved and allow all parties to maintain excellent standards of care for wounded soldiers in the battlefield space,” said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Nathan Boyer, the medical director of the medical simulation center at Landstuhl. “The engagements, like the one we completed, are a key way to grow a more unified and stronger military medical service throughout the continent.”
Lithuania stands as a valued partner of the United States and a critical ally in the Baltic region. Continued global health engagements with Lithuanian allies will heighten survivability on the battlefield and save lives across the continent.