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History: Combat medics, Afghanistan

History: Combat Medics, Afghanistan

History
Surgeon Dominique Jean Larrey directed the Grande Armée Napoleon to develop mobile field hospitals, or "ambulances volantes" (flying ambulances), in addition to a corps trained and equipped soldiers to aid those on the battlefield. Before Larrey's initiative in the 1790s, wounded soldiers were either left amid the fighting until the combat ended or their comrades would carry them to the rear line.
It was during the American Civil War that Surgeon (Major) Jonathan Letterman, Medical Director the Army the Potomac, realized a need for an integrated medical treatment and evacuation system. He saw the need to equip this system with its own dedicated vehicles, organizations, facilities, and personnel. The Letterman plan was first implemented in September 1862 at the Battle Antietam, Maryland. The United States Army’s need for medical and scientific specialty ficers to support combat operations resulted in the creation two temporary components: the US Army Ambulance Service, established on June 23, 1917 and the Sanitary Corps, established on June 30, 1917. Officers the Sanitary Corps served in medical logistics, hospital administration, patient administration, resource management, x-ray, laboratory engineering, physical reconstruction, gas defense, and venereal disease control. They were dedicated members the medical team that enabled American generals to concentrate on enemy threats rather than epidemic threats. On August 4, 1947, Congress created the Medical Service Corps.

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