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Bridging the Gap: Improving Aeromedical Evacuation Between Military and Civil Authorities During Disaster Response

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Hurricane Katrina and other recent natural disasters have highlighted the need for AE military assistance to state and national disaster response operations within CONUS. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the best method to employ an integrated AE patient movement and tracking system across all military, state and federal agencies for disaster response. The study answers this question how can AE patient movement and tracking be improved between military and civil authorities in the event of a federal disaster This study uses the evaluation method to consider what steps should be taken to adopt a uniform aeromedical evacuation AE patient movement and tracking system for CONUS disaster response. The research provides a brief history of military AE, a case study of AE in Operation Iraqi Freedom and a case study of AE response in Hurricane Katrina. The research then examines the current state of AE in federal disaster response and evaluates concepts and systems that could be adopted for improved AE integration across multiple levels of state and federal government. Inputs from subject matter experts in patient movement and tracking are used in this evaluation process. Finally, the research concludes by assessing the need for improved patient movement and tracking systems. The recommendations from this study include patient movement and patient tracking improvements. The primary recommendation from the study is to adopt JPATS as the universal patient tracking tool for all state and federal agencies in AE disaster response. The secondary recommendation is to adopt the Disaster Aeromedical Staging Facility DASF with Mobile Acute Care Strike Team MAC-ST concept as the AE staging standard for civilmilitary patient movement in federal disaster response operations.

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Approved For Public Release;

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