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[*] posted on 11-10-2017 at 06:51 PM
Forces Medical matters


New system lets medics transmit medevac patient info hands-free

By: Kathleen Curthoys   14 hours ago


A new system the Army is developing would take the burden off medics and provide detailed information to a hospital or clinic. (Maj. Allen Hill/Army)

A medic treating patients in the back of a medevac helicopter has his hands full, treating patients and doing math in his head to figure out doses of medication. He lets the receiving medical facility know patients are inbound, but there may not be a lot more information about what the ground medical crew can expect.

A new system the Army is developing would take the burden off medics and provide detailed information to a hospital or clinic, said Lt. Col. Christian Cook, project manager for medevac at the Army Medical Materiel Agency.

The medical data is captured by sensors, stored and sent wirelessly to the medical facility on the ground, Cook said Tuesday at the Association of the U.S. Army’s annual convention.

“A medvac pilot gets called out on an urgent request, we get out there and undoubtedly load up more than one patient, abilateral amputee or a sucking chest wound. How do we let the receivng medical facility know what‘s coming?” he noted.

The system is Medical Hands-free Ultra Wideband Broadcast, or MEDHUB, which captures medical data through a wireless connection and transmits over the Army tactical networks.

It uses devices approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the Army is leveraging equipment that already exists, said Jay Wang, product manager for transport telemedicine systems at the Army Medical Materiel Agency.

“This hasn’t been done before,” Wang said.

Retired Sgt. 1st Class Jeffery Jones, who was also participating in the AUSA presentation, added: “From Vietnam to now, things haven’t changed.”

“A paramedic makes the call from the back of a helicopter, sometimes pilots or a crew chief make the call, or you’re task-saturated, and you say we’re three minutes out with three patients,” he said. “I have to retain information from all one to six patients.”

At the end of the day, the medic writes up patient care reports. MEDHUB spares the medic from that task.

“Administration is one of the biggest obnoxious things we have to deal with,” Wang said. The system “takes off the tedious workload medics have.”

At the end of his duty, he can take a tablet device to the hospital and provide the work flow he has done on each patient.

Medics would use a vital signs monitor, pulse oximeter, oxygen monitor, blood pressure cuff and other equipment with the sensor kit, which notes if patients are ambulatory or need emergency treatment.

The system also relieves medics from having to guess a patient’s weight to calculate doses of medication.

Another vital piece of information is the medevac’s estimated time of arrival, based on a blue force tracker and GPS data.

The system is in the final concept stages, then the plan is to take it into test and evalution, Wang said.
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[*] posted on 23-1-2018 at 07:28 PM


SOTECH Debuts its Next Gen SOF Medical Carriage System at SHOT 2018

January 22nd, 2018



SOTech built its reputation over the last 20 years designing and building medical systems for our nation’s elite special operations units. This is a modular medical pack system that functions across the 3 platforms of RUCK-TRUCK-HOUSE. This 2nd generation evolution of SOF medical packs incorporates a decade of wartime operator input. A tailored set of modular pouches are chosen to affix to any of these packs/harnesses/panels. Check out the system laid out in booth 20113 at the SHOT Show.

http://www.sotechtactical.com/
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[*] posted on 23-1-2018 at 08:30 PM


Honestly, it's over engineered. You don't really want the same kit hanging in a vehicle as you do in your Tomas pack. In my Thomas pack I want a few cannulation rolls so that I can line-up half a couple of patients in quick succession, in my vehicle I want a bin full of the fuckers so that I can cannulate a small natural disaster. Sure I'll want the same functional bits in each (airway bag, vascular access bag, dressings, more dressings, big bag-o-drugs, lots of sutures), but I want them in vastly different quantities, and each time I step up I want more variety, so modular pouches makes zero sense.
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[*] posted on 3-7-2018 at 01:23 PM


NMC San Diego demonstrates remote medical care technologies

Andrew White, Hawaii - Jane's International Defence Review

02 July 2018


Naval Medicine Center San Diego’s tele-critical care demonstrator seen at ‘RIMPAC’ 2018 in Hawaii. Source: Andrew White

Naval Medicine Center (NMC) San Diego has taken the opportunity at the latest Rim of the Pacific (‘RIMPAC’) international naval exercise to showcase a tele-critical care (TCC) demonstrator aimed at supporting forward deployed forces.

The TCC demonstrator is designed to provide expert consultation using bi-directional and high definition virtual teleconferencing (VTC) technology as well as enabling remote access to electronic medical records, imaging and bedside telemetry data.

According to US Navy literature, the solution has been designed to augment the in-service telephone and e-mail based ADVISOR programme, allowing a smaller number of ‘intensivist’ medical professionals to care for larger numbers of geographically remote patients.

It is envisaged that the TCC capability will be merged with ADVISOR in order to provide a single network capable of providing “on-demand, high acuity and multi-modality consultations,” Mark Griffith, nurse supervisor at NMC San Diego, told Jane’s .

The TCC technology demonstrator which was displayed at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH), Hawaii, comprises a hardened and transportable examination case that houses an end-user device monitor, handheld camera system, electrocardiogram (ECG); thermometer, and devices to measure vital signs.

Also displayed was a variety of communications solutions including a Private Data Network case to support 4G connectivity, with 5G support in the pipeline; as well as WiFi hotspot and BGAN antenna connectivity devices.

Griffith also told Jane’s that NMC San Diego will integrate wearable augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to the TCC demonstrator.

This, he added, would allow a man-machine interface to autonomously identify, assess and assist in the treatment of patient wounds such as burns, gunshot wounds and sucking chest injuries.

A VR headset, designed by Philips Respironics, was also displayed illustrating the capability of a forward-deployed soldier to share a 3D holographic image of the patient with medical experts located in the US or main operating bases elsewhere in the world.

(336 of 443 words)
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[*] posted on 22-11-2018 at 03:14 PM


This Inventor May Have Cured Motion Sickness Without Drugs. And That Could Mean a Lot to the US Military


Inventor Sam Owen shows of the OtoTech, a device that prevents motion sickness by sending subtle vibrations through the inner ear to the brain.

BY PATRICK TUCKER
TECHNOLOGY EDITOR

NOVEMBER 20, 2018

One manufacturer of virtual-reality trainers has already begun including the devices in its simulators.

An inventor may have discovered a non-pharmaceutical cure for car sickness that could revolutionize the way people experience everything from travel to the newest virtual-reality headsets. That, in turn, could affect how the military trains, fights, and navigates.

Just like civilians, troops get motion-sick. A 2009 study by the Naval Aerospace Medical Research Laboratory found that more than half of soldiers got sick while riding in Army vehicles. Roughly 25 percent of military personnel got sick on “moderate seas” and 70 percent on “rough seas.” In the air, as many as 50 percent of personnel get airsick; even 64 percent of parachutists reported episodes.

To treat symptoms, troops typically take a drug called scopolamine. It has serious side effects, most notably drowsiness, so soldiers often take it with an amphetamine that carries its own downsides and side effects. It’s like being on uppers and downers at once, which makes for a fatiguing Friday night, much less a war.

The military’s problems with motion sickness will worsen considerably as more and more training is conducted in virtual reality.

“The availability of immersive learning environments like virtual-augmented-mixed reality afforded by commercial off-the-shelf technology fosters has the potential to create the paradigm shift necessary to deliver the most ready force ever known,” said Lt. Col. Matthew Strohmeyer, the 560th Flying Training Squadron commander. Yet VR training, in particular, can make troops sick. “Though we have made great strides in understanding the true causes of air sickness, from a cellular physiology perspective, much is still to be learned, especially when it comes to cyber sickness.”

The Air Force Research Lab is currently looking at the effects of motion sickness among a small group of “future instructor pilots” that are training with a new syllabus that uses virtual reality. The research brings in experts from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology as well as physiologists and small businesses. “Our findings will further inform safety countermeasures to ensure aviators can meet the demand of any physiological threat that presents itself,” said Strohmeyer.

The Air Force isn’t just looking to use VR for pilots. They’ve contracted with a Portland, Oregon-based company called VR Motion to train truck drivers. “What we’ve learned is that the current method for training hasn’t been updated for decades,” said Keith Maher, the company’s founder and CEO.

“Driving a large combat vehicle like a Humvee, or an up-armored Humvee on public roads, is actually counter to what they [the Humvees] are designed to do. On public roads, there will be pedestrians and small vehicles. The large blind spots that you have in a Humvee are something you need to train for…With our virtual reality technology we can recreate high-hazard situations whenever we want.”

But as many gamers are today discovering, VR can have big motion-sickness effects.

“Historically, we’ve seen about a 20 to 30 percent discomfort level” with VR training, Maher said. “That’s a big number for us if we want our product to go out and change the lives of millions of people.”

Enter a young inventor named Samuel Owen, who has developed a prototype device called the OtoTech, from Otolith Labs. Worn on a headband behind the ear, it uses subtle vibrations to change the way the brain computes the fact that the body that it’s attached to is in motion. Early tests show it relieves motion sickness without the side effects of drugs, Owen said, though he admits the science is so young that it’s not clear just how.

The vibrations emanating from the OtoTech gently target two of the four fibers that carry data about body motion to the brain via a system of inner ear sensors called the vestibulocochlear nerve. “Two [of the four vestibulocochlear nerve fibers] go to the brain, two go to your reflexes,” Owen said. The trick is to affect the former and not the latter.

“The working hypothesis is that [the vibration] causes a chaotic and noninformative stimulus to go to the brain. Somewhere, probably the cerebellum, there’s a filtering mechanism that filters out noninformative sensed information. It’s the reason you don’t notice the shirt on your back right now,” he said.

In other words, while you remain consciously aware that you’re moving, the balance portion of your brain stops noticing the fact; the data has been drowned out in white noise from the device.

So far, he says, initial testing shows that it works to prevent motion sickness without affecting balance, vision, alertness, or anything else it’s not supposed to.

Researchers at Jaguar Land Rover are conducting double-blind trials with the device, moving toward publication, he says. Medical researchers at Coventry University in the U.K. and the University of Miami are looking at therapeutic applications related to treating vertigo.

Owen says that he has initially marketed the device to vertigo sufferers, and not yet to the military, or even the motion-sickness market. But Maher has begun to incorporate Owen’s device into his VR trainers.

“We noticed that it would improve the overall virtual reality experience,” said Maher. “We’ve started to use it in our military devices. The initial reaction is, it looks unusual, but afterwards, people don’t event notice.”
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[*] posted on 15-12-2018 at 01:37 PM


US Army seeks to protect medical devices from cyber threats

Gerrard Cowan, Belfast - Jane's International Defence Review

14 December 2018


A service member positions a patient for a CT scan. Medical devices, such as radiological imaging systems, must now go through a cyber-security validation process in order to connect to military networks. Source: US Army/Staff Sgt Evelyn Chavez

The US Army Medical Command (MEDCOM) is growing its focus on cyber security, working to harden its increasingly networked devices against potential threats.

The army recently noted how almost all new medical devices contain some type of computer technology and are often remotely or wirelessly accessible, making them potentially susceptible to hackers.

To address the problem, the army created a cyber-security cell within the US Army Medical Materiel Agency (USAMMA) in early 2017, with the aim of ensuring medical devices comply with Department of Defense (DoD) cyber-security standards.

There are a number of potential concerns stemming from networked medical devices, said Captain Christopher Glass, MEDCOM's chief of cyber-security operations and security control assessor representative.

While the theft of private data is a significant threat, it is not the primary concern, he told Jane's . He said his own personal information has been hacked several times this year alone, and that while this was an inconvenience, it did not cause bodily harm. The real concern stems from the nature of medical equipment as life-saving devices that are hooked up to soldiers.

"If a hacker could gain control of that device, say an anesthesia machine, while it is connected to a patient, they could cause grave injury or death to that patient," Capt Glass explained. "That is my main concern: the safety of each person that steps into one of our facilities and has placed their faith in the network we are trying to protect by ensuring our devices are adequately secured."

Medical information privacy and protection "is one of the hottest topics in cyber security right now, which puts additional focus on ensuring adequate security", Capt Glass said. He spends most of his time ensuring that medical devices meet the standards set by the Risk Management Framework (RMF), the US government's overarching policy for device and network security.

(331 of 718 words)
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[*] posted on 11-1-2019 at 04:46 PM


Posted here for convenience............we, in Australia, are unlikely to go this route, but it's interesting to see the role-changeable options he looks at in the conclusions.......another interesting long article form the semi-defunct Think Defence web-blog..........

A UK Hospital Ship

A UK Hospital Ship has been a recurring theme in the media and over the years, accompanied by much online discussion, but it has never really gained much traction in Government. Comments from the Secretary of State for International Development (Penny Mordaunt MP) reported in the Daily Mail would seem to have improved its prospects.

Quote:

Tens of millions of pounds in foreign aid money could be used to build ships to provide humanitarian relief – and help the Royal Navy.

International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt believes this dual role will quell concerns about Britain annual £14billion foreign aid budget. Critics often claim it is used to help nations wealthy enough to run their own space programmes, such as India and China.

However, Miss Mordaunt claims the vessels’ dual role – by assisting in military operations when they are not needed as hospital ships in disaster zones – will allay those fears. In addition, the ships could even be used to host trade missions and promote Britain to the world, much like the Royal Yacht Britannia did before it was decommissioned in 1997.


Edited................Link: https://www.thinkdefence.co.uk/a-uk-hospital-ship/
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[*] posted on 22-1-2019 at 05:39 PM


Zap: How Electric Therapy Is Curing Navy SEALs of PTSD … And Could Remake Brain Science

A data visualization showing different regions of brain in terms of electrical activity, gathered via EEG.

BY PATRICK TUCKER
TECHNOLOGY EDITOR

JANUARY 20, 2019


NEWPORT BRAIN TREATMENT LAB

Hundreds of vets have tried out an experimental new treatment that could change how the world addresses mental disorders.

Tony didn’t know what to expect when he walked into the Brain Treatment Center in San Diego, California, last spring. The former Navy SEAL only knew that he needed help. His service in Iraq and Afghanistan was taking a heavy toll on his mental and physical wellbeing. He had trouble concentrating, remembering, and was given to explosive bursts of anger. “If somebody cut me off driving, I was ready to kill ’em at the drop of a hat,” he said. And after he got into a fistfight on the side of a California road, his son looking on from the car, he decided he was willing to try anything — even an experimental therapy that created an electromagnetic field around his brain.

What Tony and several other former U.S. Special Operations Forces personnel received Newport Brain Research Laboratory, located at the Center, was a new treatment for brain disorders, one that might just revolutionize brain-based medicine. Though the FDA clinical trials to judge its efficacy and risks are ongoing, the technique could help humanity deal with a constellation of its most common mental disorders — depression, anxiety, aggressiveness, attention deficit, and others—and do so without drugs. And if its underpinning theory proves correct, it could be among the biggest breakthroughs in the treatment of mental health since the invention of the EEG a century ago.

At the lab, Tony (whose name has been changed to protect his identity) met Dr. Erik Won, president and CEO of the Newport Brain Research Laboratory, the company that’s innovating Magnetic EEG/ECG-guided Resonant Therapy, or MeRT. Won’s team strapped cardiac sensors on Tony and placed an electroencephalography cap on his skull to measure his brain’s baseline electrical activity. Then came the actual therapy. Placing a flashlight-sized device by Tony’s skull, they induced an electromagnetic field that senta small burst of current to his brain. Over the course of 20 minutes, they moved the device around his cranium, delivering jolts that, at their most aggressive, felt like a firm finger tapping.

For Tony, MeRT’s effects were obvious and immediate. He walked out of the first session to a world made new. “Everything looked different,” he told me. “My bike looked super shiny.”

He began to receive MeRT five times a week— each session lasting about an hour, with waiting room time — and quickly noticed a change in his energy. “I was super boosted,” he said. His mood changed as well.

Today, he admits that he still has moments of frustration but says that anger is no longer his “go-to emotion.” He’s developed the ability to cope. He still wants help with his memory, but his life is very different. He’s taken up abstract painting and welding, two hobbies he had no interest in at all before the therapy. He’s put in a new kitchen. Most importantly, his sleep is very different: better.

Tony’s experience was similar to those of five other special-operations veterans who spoke with Defense One. All took part in a double-blind randomized clinical trial that sought to determine how well MeRT treats Persistent Post-Concussion Symptoms and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD. Five out of the six were former Navy SEALS.

In many ways, SEALS represent the perfect test group for experimental brain treatment. They enter the service in superb health and then embark on a course of training that heightens mental and physical strength and alertness. Then comes their actual jobs, which involve a lot of “breaching”: getting into a place that the enemy is trying to keep you out of. It could be a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan—or every single door in that compound.

Breaching is so central to SEAL work that it’s earned them the nickname “door kickers.” But it often involves not so much kicking as explosives at closer-than-comfortable range. “I got blown up a lot in training,” says Tony, and a lot afterwards as well. Put those two factors together and you have a population with a high functioning baseline but with a lot of incidents of persistent post-concussive syndrome, often on top of heavy combat-related PTSD and other forms of trauma.

One by one, these former SEALs found their way to Won’s lab. One — let’s call him Bill — sought to cure his debilitating headaches. Another, Ted, a SEAL trainer, had no severe symptoms but wanted to see whether the therapy could improve his natural physical state and performance. A fourth, Jim, also a former SEAL, suffered from severe inability to concentrate, memory problems, and low affect, which was destroying his work performance. “I was forcing myself to act normal,” Jim said. “I didn’t feel like I was good at anything.”

Yet another, a former member of the Air Force Security Forces named Cathy, had encountered blasts and a “constant sound of gunfire” during her deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. She suffered from memory problems, depression, anger, bouts of confusion, and migraines so severe she had to build a darkroom in her house.

Like Cathy, the rest had difficulty sleeping. Even Ted, who had no severe PTSD-related problems, reported that he “slept like crap,” before the treatment began.

All said that they saw big improvements after a course of therapy that ran five days a week for about four weeks. Bill reported that his headaches were gone, as did Cathy, who said her depression and mood disorders had lessened considerably. Jim’s memory and concentration improved so dramatically that he had begun pursuing a second master’s degree and won a spot on his college’s football team. Ted said he was feeling “20 years younger” physically and found himself better able to keep pace with the younger SEALS he was training. All of it, they say, was a result of small, precisely delivered, pops of electricity to the brain. Jim said the lab had also successfully treated back and limb pain by targeting the peripheral nervous system with the same technique.


Inside the Brain Treatment Center in San Diego, the location of the Newport Brain Research Lab, a wall displays paintings of patients who have undergone MeRT therapy, the tone, mood, and control in the paintings evolves as the patient continues through the treatment.
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[*] posted on 12-2-2019 at 09:51 PM


DARPA Is Trying Bioelectric Implants to Help Heal Wounds


The 1st Battalion 228th Aviation Regiment practices 9-line medical evacuations at Soto Cano Air Base, Honduras, Dec. 12, 2018.
U.S. AIR FORCE PHOTO BY SENIOR AIRMAN DESTINEE SWEENEY

BY FRANK KONKEL
EXECUTIVE EDITOR, NEXTGOV

FEBRUARY 11, 2019

One of the Pentagon’s new research programs could see biosensors, actuators and even artificial intelligence implanted in soldiers to speed up the body’s healing processes.

The Defense Department’s research wing has created a new program office to develop bioelectronic implants that stimulate tissue recovery in complex wounds, such as those suffered by troops in battle.

The Bioelectronics for Tissue Regeneration program, which the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency announced Tuesday, is looking for advancements in biosensors, actuators and artificial intelligence that could “dramatically improve” tissue regeneration.

DARPA will host a proposers day on March 1 in Arlington, Virginia to provide more information to interested researchers.

The Pentagon is exploring bioelectronics as a means to improve military readiness. According to the Defense Department, 23 percent of blast injuries sustained by soldiers will not fully close, and nearly two-thirds of military trauma patients suffer a condition known as heterotopic ossification, “a painful experience that can greatly limit future mobility.”

Under traditional “passive” approaches to treatment, catastrophic damage to bones, skin and nerves take months to years to heal and often patients don’t fully recover. DARPA’s BETR program wants to connect technology to human tissue to monitor, accelerate and improve the body’s recovery process.

“Wounds are living environments and the conditions change quickly as cells and tissues communicate and attempt to repair,” said Paul Sheehan, BETR program manager. “An ideal treatment would sense, process and respond to these changes in the wound state and intervene to correct and speed recovery. For example, we anticipate interventions that modulate immune response, recruit necessary cell types to the wound or direct how stem cells differentiate to expedite healing.”

One of the important breakthroughs BETR is hoping for is a mechanism for monitoring the body’s physiological processes in real time. Whereas the application of an adaptive treatment like antibiotic ointment is useful in treating cuts, completely wiping out natural bacteria can impair healing.

“Thus, without feedback, antibiotics can be counterproductive,” Sheehan said. Bioelectronics could monitor changes in bacteria within the wound and use an available signal—optical, biochemical, bioelectric or mechanical—to monitor healing and stimulate or reduce the body’s physiological processes when necessary.

“By the conclusion of the four-year BETR program, DARPA expects researchers to demonstrate a closed-loop, adaptive system that includes sensors to assess wound state and track the body’s complex responses to interventions; biological actuators that transmit appropriate biochemical and biophysical signals precisely over space and time to influence healing; and adaptive learning approaches to process data, build models and determine interventions,” DARPA said.
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[*] posted on 26-6-2019 at 10:19 PM


New Stretcher Can Isolate Wounded on Battlefields

6/26/2019

By Mandy Mayfield


Photo: Peke Safety

TAMPA, Fla. A patient isolation stretcher that was created in collaboration with Special Operations Command is currently undergoing testing at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Peke Safety, which provides equipment for first responders, worked with SOCOM to develop the device, which was dubbed the MilPod. The stretcher has a single-piece inflatable frame covered by a clear envelope that inflates in about nine seconds and creates a portable chemical- and biohazard-ready isolation chamber, Peter Cooper, vice president of marketing and partner at Peke Safety told National Defense during the annual Special Operations Forces Industry Conference. The lining is removable and can be discarded after use, which helps maximize its efficiency, he noted.

You can replace the bag without having to throw everything away, which is another important cost element, he said.

The MilPod comes with both an air filtration system and a portable cooling unit, giving the stretcher the ability to supply positive or negative pressure throughout the chamber for up to 10 hours, he noted.

This allows them to put a contaminated patient into a safe zone to protect the medic and the patient as well as the infrastructure so you can reduce the decontamination costs of vehicles and aircraft, Cooper said.

The stretcher can also be used to aid burn victims with its positive mode, cooling and humidity systems, he noted. Positive mode is designed to help prevent burn victims wounds from becoming infected while they await further treatment, he said.

Youre keeping an infection away from the patient, which is very critical if you are badly burned, Cooper said. Also, you can introduce an element of cooling and humidity through the cooling system, which can actually arrest the blistering cause in the early stages of a burn. This can accelerate the healing process, he added.

The MilPod weighs approximately 44 pounds and can float on water and be dragged through harsh environments, he noted.
The whole thing has been designed with special forces in mind, covert missions where you may have to go across rough terrain, Cooper said.

The MilPod was also designed to safely admit patients to hospitals without cross-contaminating equipment or personnel, he added.

The system is currently undergoing trials, where it is being transported via medevac helicopters and other aircraft, he noted. It can act as a portable stretcher, portable operating room, autopsy unit and a temporary body bag, he said.
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