USAFE-AFAFRICA hosts multinational medical knowledge exchange

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Thomas Karol
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

The United States Air Forces in Europe - Air Forces Africa Office of the Command Surgeon hosted a medical knowledge exchange with NATO allies Denmark and Bulgaria as well as U.S. partner nation Serbia, at Ramstein Air Base Germany, Nov. 28-Dec. 1, 2023.

The exchange granted the participants a chance to trade information and experience with one another to further integrate with their unique missions and form best practices.

“This workshop is more than just a meeting of minds,” said U.S. Air Force Maj. Lyubormir Angelov, USAFE-AFAFRICA Office of the Command Surgeon international health specialist. “It’s a testament to the unwavering commitment to advancing military medicine and solidifying an alliance that transcends borders. We are proud to have NATO and partners here to make us stronger together.”

The medics from the four nations participated in multiple scenarios to discuss how each nation achieves their intended results and ways to combine them into the best practice. They visited locations such as the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Theater Patient Movement Requirement Center, 86th Medical Group Simulation Center and 86th MDG Flight Medicine Clinic. 

“The aim of this assembly is significant, offering an unmatched opportunity for partnership nation members to collaborate with U.S. subject matter experts,” Angelov said. “Collectively, we explored the intricacies of aerospace medicine, aeromedical evacuation, patient movement, and enhanced our simulation centers, creating a fertile ground for events like these.”

Participants also toured aeromedical facilities around the base and Kaiserslautern Military Community, including the Landstuhl Medical Simulation Center, Ramstein En-Route Patient Staging Flight, and 86th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron.

“The event is designed to showcase the latest aeromedical evacuation procedures and equipment on a U.S. airbase to our partner nations,” said U.S. Air Force Maj. Nicola Morrison, USAFE-AFAFRICA Office of the Command Surgeon Europe Global Health Engagement Team Chief.

This opportunity helped strengthen bonds and foster interoperability as well as helped members network with one another.

“This is a great chance for key medical personnel in Serbia, Bulgaria and Denmark to make lasting connections with each other and with U.S. personnel to develop a sustainable relationship that serves as a starting point to share best methods for many years to come,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Joel Foster, USAFE-AFAFRICA Office of the Command Surgeon global health engagements branch chief. “In this way, each country benefits from advancements in technology, processes and procedures for patient care and movement across the battlespace.”

Each of the participants from the four nations walked away from the knowledge exchange with something different. For Angelov, it was about the medics coming together to learn from each other and strengthen ties and partnerships.

“This is important for us to compare and contrast how we do business in our aerospace medical program,” said Bulgarian air force 2nd Lt Boryana Ralcheva, medical simulation training center instructor. “We want to see what works here and see if we can apply it to our program. We do not want to invent something new if it is already in service. This is a great opportunity for us and I look forward to the next knowledge exchange.”