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Military Health System Studies Inventory Tool

Welcome to the Military Health System Studies Inventory Tool (MSIT). Military Health System (MHS) data are used by Department of Defense, Veterans Administration, and academic health professionals and scientists to implement health care studies. These studies reflect the MHS interest to rigorously assess and improve our beneficiaries’ access to the high quality health care services they need. Additionally, these studies are frequently used to develop or improve MHS policy and often adopt useful, relevant comparisons to the national health care experience.

The MSIT allows easy review of recent studies that are either conducted or sponsored by the MHS, or accomplished using datasets developed or maintained by the Defense Health Agency for administrative, operational, or research purposes. The studies within this website represent important contributions of the MHS to the national health care dialogue and reflect our capacity to tackle the challenging issues needed to support evidence-informed health policy. Thank you for your interest in them.

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Monitoring Exposure to Ebola and Health of U.S. Military Personnel Deployed in Support of Ebola Control Efforts - Liberia, October 25, 2014-February 27, 2015.

Study

Abstract

In response to the unprecedented Ebola virus disease (Ebola) outbreak in West Africa, the U.S. government deployed approximately 2,500 military personnel to support the government of Liberia. Their primary missions were to construct Ebola treatment units (ETUs), train health care workers to staff ETUs, and provide laboratory testing capacity for Ebola. Service members were explicitly prohibited from engaging in activities that could result in close contact with an Ebola-infected patient or coming in contact with the remains of persons who had died from unknown causes. Military units performed twice-daily monitoring of temperature and review of exposures and symptoms ("unit monitoring") on all persons throughout deployment, exit screening at the time of departure from Liberia, and post-deployment monitoring for 21 days at segregated, controlled monitoring areas on U.S. military installations. A total of 32 persons developed a fever during deployment from October 25, 2014, through February 27, 2015; none had a known Ebola exposure or developed Ebola infection. Monitoring of all deployed service members revealed no Ebola exposures or infections. Given their activity restrictions and comprehensive monitoring while deployed to Liberia, U.S. military personnel constitute a unique population with a lower risk for Ebola exposure compared with those working in the country without such measures.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: DoD agency, office, or organization other than the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Defense Health Agency
  • Sponsoring Office:
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Agency, office or organization under authority of the Sec Def (not affiliated to Army, Navy, or Air Force)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Cardile AP, et. al., Monitoring Exposure to Ebola and Health of U.S. Military Personnel Deployed in Support of Ebola Control Efforts - Liberia, October 25, 2014-February 27, 2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Jul 3;64(25):690-4.

Third-Party Evaluation: A Review of Dietary Supplements Dispensed by Military Treatment Facilities From 2007 to 2011.

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Third-party certification/verification of dietary supplements (DS), although not mainstream, is one way to help ensure high-quality products. In the medical setting, physicians may prescribe DS to correct a deficiency or improve a health care outcome, and they want products of a certain standard of quality, free of adulteration/contamination. OBJECTIVE: We reviewed DS dispensed from all Department of Defense military treatment facilities over a 5-year period to determine which products had been third-party reviewed and certified/verified. METHODS: By using product name, manufacturer, and/or National Drug Codes, we examined product listings on the websites of three independent-evaluating organizations. RESULTS: Over 1.5 million dietary supplement prescriptions consisting of 753 different products were dispensed from 2007 through 2011. Less than 3.6% of the products examined were third-party certified/verified by any of the three most well-known evaluation organizations: 19 were verified by United States Pharmacopeial Convention; 9 products were reviewed and 8 certified by ConsumerLab; and none of the products were certified by NSF International. CONCLUSION: Most DS dispensed by military treatment facilities are not reviewed by a third party. This is not unexpected, as third party certification is not yet mainstream. However, one way to reduce potential hazards and exposure to unsafe products is to encourage use of supplements that have third-party certification/verification.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Jones DR, Kasper KB, Deuster PA. Third-Party Evaluation: A Review of Dietary Supplements Dispensed by Military Treatment Facilities From 2007 to 2011. Mil Med. 2015 Jul;180(7):737-41.

Respiratory Infections in the U.S. Military: Recent Experience and Control.

Study

Abstract

This comprehensive review outlines the impact of military-relevant respiratory infections, with special attention to recruit training environments, influenza pandemics in 1918 to 1919 and 2009 to 2010, and peacetime operations and conflicts in the past 25 years. Outbreaks and epidemiologic investigations of viral and bacterial infections among high-risk groups are presented, including (i) experience by recruits at training centers, (ii) impact on advanced trainees in special settings, (iii) morbidity sustained by shipboard personnel at sea, and (iv) experience of deployed personnel. Utilizing a pathogen-by-pathogen approach, we examine (i) epidemiology, (ii) impact in terms of morbidity and operational readiness, (iii) clinical presentation and outbreak potential, (iv) diagnostic modalities, (v) treatment approaches, and (vi) vaccine and other control measures. We also outline military-specific initiatives in (i) surveillance, (ii) vaccine development and policy, (iii) novel influenza and coronavirus diagnostic test development and surveillance methods, (iv) influenza virus transmission and severity prediction modeling efforts, and (v) evaluation and implementation of nonvaccine, nonpharmacologic interventions.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Sanchez JL, Cooper MJ, Myers CA, Cummings JF, Vest KG, Russell KL, Sanchez JL, Hiser MJ, Gaydos CA. Respiratory Infections in the U.S. Military: Recent Experience and Control. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2015 Jul;28(3):743-800.

Self-administration of intranasal influenza vaccine: Immunogenicity and volunteer acceptance. Vaccine. 2015 Jul 31;33(32):3894-9.

Study

Abstract

BACKGROUND: In outbreak settings, mass vaccination strategies could maximize health protection of military personnel. Self-administration of live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) may be a means to vaccinate large numbers of people and achieve deployment readiness while sparing the use of human resources. METHODS: A phase IV, open-label, randomized controlled trial evaluating the immunogenicity and acceptance of self-administered (SA) LAIV was conducted from 2012 to 2014. SA subjects were randomized to either individual self-administration or self-administration in a group setting. Control randomized subjects received healthcare worker-administered (HCWA) LAIV. Anti-hemagglutinin (HAI) antibody concentrations were measured pre- and post-vaccination. The primary endpoint was immunogenicity non-inferiority between SA and HCWA groups. Subjects were surveyed on preferred administration method. RESULTS: A total of 1077 subjects consented and were randomized (529 SA, 548 HCWA). Subject characteristics were very similar between groups, though SA subjects were younger, more likely to be white and on active duty. The per-protocol analysis included 1024 subjects (501 SA, 523 HCWA). Post-vaccination geometric mean titers by vaccine strain and by study group (HCWA vs. SA) were: A/H1N1 (45.8 vs. 48.7, respectively; p=0.43), A/H3N2 (45.5 vs. 46.4; p=0.80), B/Yamagata (17.2 vs. 17.8; p=0.55). Seroresponses to A components were high (∼67%), while seroresponses to B components were lower (∼25%). Seroresponse did not differ by administration method. Baseline preference for administration method was similar between groups, with the majority in each group expressing no preference. At follow-up, the majority (64%) of SA subjects preferred SA vaccine. CONCLUSIONS: LAIV immunogenicity was similar for HCWA and SA vaccines. SA was well-tolerated and preferred to HCWA among those who performed SA.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Agency, office or organization under authority of the Sec Def (not affiliated to Army, Navy, or Air Force)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Burgess TH, et. al.,

Group Prenatal Care Outcomes in a Military Population: A Retrospective Cohort Study.

Study

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate pregnancy outcomes in Centering Pregnancy patients. METHODS: This was an IRB-approved retrospective cohort study from November 2009 to January 2013 involving 202 Centering Pregnancy patients and 202 Certified Nurse Midwife patients. The primary outcome was mean gestational age at time of delivery. Secondary outcomes included cesarean and operative vaginal delivery rate, triage visit frequency, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit admission rate, 1 and 5 minute APGAR scores, birth weight, breastfeeding rate at discharge and 6 weeks postpartum, third and fourth degree laceration rate, weight gain in pregnancy, and excessive weight gain rate. RESULTS: There was no statistically significant difference in any obstetric outcome including preterm delivery rate. Centering Pregnancy patients were more likely to be active duty (52.0 vs. 35.6%, p = 0.001), younger (24.8 vs. 26.3 years old, p < 0.001), and nulliparous (75.2 vs. 56.9%, p < 0.001). There was a statistically significant increase in triage visit frequency ≥ 6 for Centering Pregnancy patients (11.9% vs. 8.9%, p = 0.011). CONCLUSION: There were no clinically significant differences in the primary or secondary outcomes. Significant cost savings could be realized by expanding Centering Pregnancy in the military health system.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Walton RB, Shaffer S, Heaton J. Group Prenatal Care Outcomes in a Military Population: A Retrospective Cohort Study. Mil Med. 2015 Jul;180(7):825-9.

Establishment of Health Utility Indices for Post-Infectious Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders in Active Duty US Military.

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Knowledge of disease burden attributable to functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGD) in travelers is lacking, despite the high incidence of travelers' diarrhea (TD) associated with increased FGD risk. One tool for assessing the impact of disease on health-related quality of life is the health utility index (HUI), which values health states based on preferential health outcomes. Health utilities can be used as preference weights in the estimation of quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs). METHODS: Six months following travel to Egypt or Turkey, 120 US military personnel completed a survey on TD during deployment, health-related quality of life (SF-36), and the onset of functional bowel disorders (Rome II). Elements from the SF-36 were used to develop SF-6D values, which were combined with health state valuations to enable calculation of HUI scores for each subject. Mean index scores were compared across functional outcomes, specific symptoms, and demographic profiles. RESULTS: The presence of FGD significantly reduced index scores, with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and dyspepsia showing the greatest impact (-0.17 and -0.19, respectively) compared with those with no FGD (p < 0.05). Importantly, however, several individuals met multiple FGD outcome definitions. Additionally, a number of symptoms associated with abnormal bowel habits and abdominal pain were associated with reduced index scores regardless of outcome. CONCLUSION: FGD are associated with significant morbidity as assessed by HUIs. Given the strong link between TD and FGD as well as the large number of travelers from the developed to the developing world, additional study is needed to further understand this association and efforts aimed at primary disease prevention are warranted. Published 2015. This article has been contributed to by US Government employees and their work is in the public domain in the USA.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Agency, office or organization under authority of the Sec Def (not affiliated to Army, Navy, or Air Force)
  • Release Date/Publication: July 01, 2015
  • Citation: Porter CK, et. al., Establishment of Health Utility Indices for Post-Infectious Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders in Active Duty US Military. J Travel Med. 2015 Jul-Aug;22(4):237-41.

The role of performance validity tests in the assessment of cognitive functioning after military concussion: A replication and extension.

Study

Abstract

The current investigation is a replication and extension of a previously published study by Cooper, Vanderploeg, Armistead-Jehle, Lewis, and Bowles (2014) demonstrating that performance validity test scores accounted for more variance in cognitive testing among service members with a history of concussion than did demographic variables, etiology of and time since injury, and symptom severity. The present study included a sample of 142 active-duty service members evaluated following a suspected or confirmed history of mild traumatic brain injury. Participants completed a battery of neuropsychological measures that included scales of performance and symptom validity (specifically the Medical Symptom Validity Test, Nonverbal Medical Symptom Validity Test, and Personality Assessment Inventory). Among the factors considered in the current study, performance validity test results accounted for the most variance in cognitive test scores, above demographic, concussion history, symptom validity, and psychological distress variables. Performance validity test results were modestly related to symptom validity as measured by the Personality Assessment Inventory Negative Impression Management scale. In sum, the current results replicated the original Cooper et al. study and highlight the importance of including performance validity tests as part of neurocognitive evaluation, even in clinical contexts, within this population.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Armistead-Jehle P, Cooper DB, Vanderploeg RD. The role of performance validity tests in the assessment of cognitive functioning after military concussion: A replication and extension. Appl Neuropsychol Adult. 2015 Nov 16:1-10.

A Retrospective Review of Screening Labs for Medical Clearance in a Military Population.

Study

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVE: We determine the incidence of clinically significant findings within mandatory screening studies during medical clearance of patients for psychiatric care. METHODS: This is a retrospective review of emergency department patients medically cleared for psychiatric care over 11 months. All patients evaluated for behavioral health-related issues are recorded on a daily report which was used to locate subjects. Laboratory studies were reviewed during that visit for the presence of abnormalities. If abnormalities were noted, the individual chart was reviewed. Our primary outcome was the incidence of clinically significant findings that warranted admission to a medical or surgical unit. RESULTS: 204 psychiatric patient reports were reviewed. 191 of these patients had screening studies performed. Seven patients were admitted to a nonpsychiatric unit. These admissions were all for elevated ethanol levels. These patients were admitted until their ethanol level decreased, and then transferred to a psychiatric facility. The total screening lab cost during this study period was $27,893. CONCLUSIONS: Routine screening has limited utility in this population and comes at significant cost. Further research should be directed to determine which patients may benefit from screening studies.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Schauer SG, Goolsby CA. A Retrospective Review of Screening Labs for Medical Clearance in a Military Population. Mil Med. 2015 Nov;180(11):1128-31.

Low back pain, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2010-2014.

Study

Abstract

Low back pain (LBP) is a common cause of disability, lost worker productivity, and healthcare costs in both military and civilian populations. During the 5-year surveillance period of this analysis, the LBP diagnoses of interest were associated with more than 6 million outpatient healthcare encounters and more than 25,000 hospitalizations among active component service members. Annual numbers of outpatient encounters for LBP diagnoses increased 34% during 2010-2014. Annual numbers of inpatient encounters decreased during the period. Incidence rates were lowest among the youngest service members and increased with advancing age. Of all service members ever given a LBP diagnosis during the surveillance period, 91% were diagnosed at least once with a condition in the broad category "nonspecific back pain." The most common specific diagnosis during the surveillance period was lumbago. The discussion covers the importance of LBP in the military, initiatives to lower the incidence of, and enhance the care of, LBP, and methodologic limitations to the analysis.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Clark LL, Hu Z. Low back pain, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2010-2014. MSMR. 2015 Dec;22(12):8-11.

Epidemiology of Exercise- and Sports-Related Injuries in a Population of Young, Physically Active Adults: A Survey of Military Servicemembers.

Study

Abstract

Numerous studies document the health benefits of a physically active lifestyle, but relatively few document the hazards of physical activity. Because of the requirement for physical fitness to complete their mission, the United States military services have a vested interest in understanding the benefits and risks of physical activity including exercise and sports. One of these risks is injury. Rates and proportion of injuries caused by exercise- and sports-related (ESR) activities have not been reported previously across the services. PURPOSE: The purposes of this population survey were to (1) document the rates and proportion of all injuries caused by ESR activities among military personnel, (2) compare rates across the military services, and (3) describe the causes and types of ESR injuries as well as associated days of limited activity. STUDY DESIGN: Descriptive epidemiology study. METHODS: The Defense Manpower Data Center administered the web-based 2008 Status of Forces Survey of Active Duty Service Members to a random sample of active-duty personnel. In all, 10,692 servicemembers completed the survey, which included questions about injuries from any cause and from exercise and sports during the previous year. Responses were weighted to produce population estimates for injury rates (any injury and ESR injury). Percentage distributions were used to describe activities, injury types, days of limited activity, and contributing factors for ESR injuries. RESULTS: There were 49% of servicemembers who sustained an injury from any cause in the previous year; 25% had an ESR injury. Thus, 52% of all injuries were ESR injuries. ESR injury rates ranged from 20% for the Navy to 33% for the Marine Corps. Running accounted for 45% of ESR injuries. Forty percent of ESR injuries were sprains and strains. As an indicator of injury severity, 35% of ESR injuries required more than 2 weeks of limited activity. CONCLUSION: This study quantified the overall incidence of injuries and the large proportion that are caused by exercise and sports among military personnel, a population of healthy, physically active adults. Prevention strategies should focus on running, weight training, basketball, and football. Recommendations include adherence to evidence-based practices to reduce the occurrence of ESR injuries.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Hauret KG, Bedno S, Loringer K, Kao TC, Mallon T, Jones BH. Epidemiology of Exercise- and Sports-Related Injuries in a Population of Young, Physically Active Adults: A Survey of Military Servicemembers. Am J Sports Med. 2015 Nov;43(11):2645-53.

Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Titers in Air Force Recruits: Below Herd Immunity Thresholds?

Study

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Preventable diseases like measles and mumps are occurring with increasing frequency in the U.S. despite the availability of an effective vaccine. Given concern that an outbreak may occur among military recruits, we compared serologic evidence of immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella among military recruits with known herd immunity thresholds and determined whether the current Department of Defense policy of presuming mumps immunity based on measles and rubella titers is reliable. METHODS: Serum antibody levels for measles, mumps, and rubella were obtained from all new recruits upon arrival at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, from 25 April 2013 through 24 April 2014. Seroprevalence of each disease was assessed by age and sex, and concordance between mumps titers and measles and rubella titers was calculated. Data analysis was performed in 2014-2015. RESULTS: Among 32,502 recruits, seroprevalences for measles, mumps, and rubella antibodies were 81.6%, 80.3%, and 82.1%, respectively. Of the 22,878 recruits seropositive for both measles and rubella antibodies, 87.7% were also seropositive for mumps. CONCLUSIONS: Seroprevalences for measles, mumps, and rubella antibodies among a large cohort of recruits entering U.S. Air Force basic training were generally lower than levels required to maintain herd immunity. In order to reduce the incidence of mumps infections, the Department of Defense should consider obtaining antibody titers for measles, mumps, and rubella and vaccinating all individuals susceptible to one or more of the viruses.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Lewis PE, Burnett DG, Costello AA, Olsen CH, Tchandja JN, Webber BJ. Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Titers in Air Force Recruits: Below Herd Immunity Thresholds? Am J Prev Med. 2015 Nov;49(5):757-60.

Occupational differences in US Army suicide rates.

Study

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Undetermined
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Kessler RC, Stein MB, Bliese PD, Bromet EJ, Chiu WT, Cox KL, et.al. Occupational differences in US Army suicide rates. Psychol Med. 2015 Nov;45(15):3293-304.

Increased risk of functional gastrointestinal sequelae after Clostridium difficile infection among active duty United States military personnel (1998-2010).

Study

Abstract

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Some acute enteric infections are associated with the development of functional gastrointestinal disorders, most commonly irritable bowel syndrome but also other functional and organic gastrointestinal sequelae. Clostridium difficile infection has increased in incidence and severity, however, few studies have evaluated functional disorders after this infection. METHODS: We evaluated the epidemiology and sequelae of C difficile in the US military population by using the US Department of Defense's Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center Defense Medical Ecounter Database. We then performed a retrospective cohort study of 891 active-duty US military personnel who developed C difficile from 1998 to 2010 and 3231 matched subjects who had not been exposed to C difficile. Subjects were identified based on International Classification of Diseases, 9th revision, Clinical Modification codes for C difficile disease. RESULTS: C difficile was associated independently with increased rate ratios (RRs) for incident irritable bowel syndrome (RR, 6.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.9-12.9), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) (RR, 1.9; 95% CI, 1.4-2.6), dyspepsia (RR, 3.3; 95%, 1.4-7.7), and constipation (RR, 2.2; 95% CI, 1.3-3.7). Approximately 14.1% of subjects with C difficile later were identified with one of these functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGDs), compared with 6% of controls. Community- and health care-associated C difficile were associated at similar rates with these sequelae. Patients were at increased risk for FGDs within 3 months of a C difficile episode, with one additional case of FGD developing for every 12 diagnoses of C difficile. CONCLUSIONS: The incidence of community- and health care-associated C difficile has increased in the US military population from 1998 through 2010. As for other gastrointestinal infections, C difficile disease is associated with clinically relevant functional sequelae in this military population.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Navy
  • Sponsoring Office: Naval Medical Research Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Navy
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Gutiérrez RL, Riddle MS, Porter CK. Increased risk of functional gastrointestinal sequelae after Clostridium difficile infection among active duty United States military personnel (1998-2010). Gastroenterology. 2015 Nov;149(6):1408-14.

When, If Ever, Should Military Physicians Violate a Military Order to Give Medical Obligations Higher Priority?

Study

Abstract

Military care providers may face ethical conflicts when they must treat their own and enemy soldiers during combat and their resources are limited. Legally under the Geneva Convention, they are instructed to treat enemy soldiers equally, but in practice, providers still have some discretion. This article discusses this discretion and ethical frameworks and uncertainties that bear on these decisions. A case is presented in which this conflict arose. How the provider resolved this is reported.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Howe EG. When, If Ever, Should Military Physicians Violate a Military Order to Give Medical Obligations Higher Priority? Mil Med. 2015 Nov;180(11):1118-9. ;180(11):1121-3.

Rates of acute respiratory illnesses of infectious and allergic etiologies after permanent changes of duty assignments, active component, U.S. Army, Air Force, and Marine Corps, January 2005-September 2015.

Study

Abstract

Throughout history, acute respiratory illnesses (ARIs) have disproportionately affected military populations, particularly those in recruit training camps. A similar dynamic can affect non-trainee military settings. When military members are reassigned, they often develop ARIs within the first weeks of their arrivals at their new assignments. To assess the natures and magnitudes of the risks associated with new assignments, this analysis compared the experiences of service members within their first full calendar months at new assignments and during the same months at the same locations 1 year later. The results do not support the hypothesis that ARIs of infectious etiologies consistently occur more frequently soon after arriving at new assignments compared to 1 year later at the same locations. In contrast, during two-thirds of the 117 months considered here, rates of ARIs of presumed allergic etiologies (e.g., allergic rhinitis, asthma) were higher during the first months of new assignments compared to 1 year later. The limitations of the study methodology as well as the possible implications of the findings are discussed.

  • Publication Status: Published
  • Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Sponsoring Office: Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center
  • Congressionally Mandated: No
  • Funding Source: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)
  • Release Date/Publication: November 01, 2015
  • Citation: Brundage JF, et. al.,Rates of acute respiratory illnesses of infectious and allergic etiologies after permanent changes of duty assignments, active component, U.S. Army, Air Force, and Marine Corps, January 2005-September 2015. MSMR. 2015 Nov;22(11):2-7
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