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Returning to contingency: the forward trauma team
  1. Andrew Dickinson1,
  2. S Dalal2 and
  3. L Beales3
  1. 1Locum GP, Tübingen, Germany
  2. 2Department of Primary Healthcare (North) Regional Clinical Director, British Army, Catterick, UK
  3. 3SO2 Med, 12 Armoured Infantry Brigade, British Army, Bulford, UK
  1. Correspondence to Maj (Ret'd) Andrew Dickinson, Locum GP, Haagasse 7, Tübingen 72070, Germany; andrewkeithdickinson{at}


During Herrick 19, Main Operating Base Price Role 1 treatment facility saw one of the busiest periods of Role 1 trauma care within the British Afghanistan campaign. Within 5 months 73 trauma casualties were treated, 48 of whom were category A. This article shares the experiences of this Role 1 and its unusual context, and discusses the relevance with regard to future medical planning. The focus is on the human element; a fundamental of all military operations yet one that is often overlooked. We consider the team construct and the team members of Role 1 and suggest how this team and its leaders can be optimally prepared, supported and maintained, and then safely disassembled. We also consider how best this team can be placed within the battle group formation in order to provide the highest standard of care.


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  • Contributors AD wrote the article and was the lead clinician for the Role 1 facility cited in the article on H19. SD provided guidance in an editorial capacity and was co-responsible with AD for devising the theme of the article; he was lead primary care clinician on H19. LB provided further editorial guidance and ‘staff’ input; he was also deployed within the med support group on H19.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.