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UK medical support to non-combatant evacuation operations
  1. Giles Nordmann1,2,
  2. N Aye Maung3 and
  3. P Reavley4
  1. 1 Academic Department of Military Anaesthesia and Critical Care, Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Birmingham, UK
  2. 2 UK Army Headquarters, Andover, UK
  3. 3 MOD A Block, London, UK
  4. 4 ED, BRI, Bristol, UK
  1. Correspondence to Col Giles Nordmann, Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Birmingham B15 2WB, UK; giles.nordmann{at}


This review presents the UK Defence Medical Services’ involvement in non-combatant evacuation operations (NEOs) in the last two decades. It examines the key medical lessons identified from those operations from publications and witness statements, and discusses key aspects that medical commanders and clinicians should consider in the future, particularly preparation, training and equipping personnel and units for future NEOs. The majority of those UK medical assets that are likely to deploy on NEOs have little or no NEO training and are ill equipped to deal with the common non-battlefield casualties seen in NEOs. Medical management of the elderly, paediatrics, chronic disease and infectious diseases are particular capability gaps.

  • humanitarian medicine
  • military medicine
  • medical planning

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  • Contributors GN, NAM and PR performed the data analysis. GN drafted the manuscript. All authors contributed to the editing and approval of the final draft.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

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