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Medical data collection on UK Military Exercise Saif Sareea 3: the EpiNATO-2 surveillance system
  1. Stephanie Chase1,
  2. M Kavanagh Williamson2 and
  3. M Smith3
  1. 14 Armoured Medical Regiment, British Army, Keogh Barracks, UK
  2. 2School of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  3. 35 Armoured Medical Regiment, British Army, Catterick, UK
  1. Correspondence to LtCol M Smith, 5 Armoured Medical Regiment, British Army, Catterick DL9 4AS, UK; drmike17{at}


Introduction Epidemiological data from military exercises are important to identify trends in medical presentations and treatment requirements to aid planning for future operations. UK Military exercises use the EpiNATO-2 surveillance system for this purpose, however it has some limitations in the spectrum of data it can collect. An enhanced reporting system titled EpiNATO-2 PLUS was developed and introduced in all LAND (Army) Role 1 Medical Treatment Facilities (MTFs) as part of Exercise Saif Sareea 3 (SS3). It was assessed as part of a Quality Improvement Project for its utility in terms of spectrum and validity of data capture.

Method Epidemiological data were collected over a 2-month period from medical consultations in Camp Shafa during SS3 by EpiNATO-2 or EpiNATO-2 PLUS. This involved categorisation of symptoms into a coding system which represents a spectrum of clinical presentations, as well as collecting data on the effect of medical issues on personnel productivity. Halfway through the collection period, an EpiNATO-2 PLUS education session and Summary Guide were introduced. Data were audited for the period before and after these introductions.

Results Of the 1163 consultations conducted in the 2-month period, the use of EpiNATO-2 PLUS captured an additional 169 patient contacts not collected by EpiNATO-2. The provision of a summary guide and teaching session decreased coding errors in the second audit period from 12.9% to 6.8% for EpiNATO-2 and from 19.4% to 6.6% for EpiNATO-2 PLUS, respectively.

Conclusions The use of EpiNATO-2 PLUS collected a broader spectrum of medical activity in the Role 1 MTF, by capturing an additional 10% of the clinical workload compared with EpiNATO-2. The increase in coding accuracy correlates with the introduction of the education session and EpiNATO-2 PLUS Summary Guide. It is recommended that EpiNATO-2 PLUS is used in future deployments.

  • primary care
  • epidemiology
  • health policy
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  • Contributors SC and MBS: researching. SC, MKW and MBS: drafting and writing of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

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

  • Data availability statement Data are available upon reasonable request. All collected data are held at 5AMR and PJHQ and accessible on request.

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