Multinational medical care for NATO Response Force Land

Multinational medical care for NATO Response Force Land

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The Multinational Medical Coordination Centre/European Medical Command (MMCC/EMC) has been tasked with the coordination of the multinational medical contributions of the NATO Response Force Land 2022-2024.

A long line of Military Trucks with Red Cross symbols on a Street

Germany will provide parts of the brigade of the NATO Response Force Land in 2023 again

Bundeswehr/Dirk Bannert

As one of the framework nations, Germany will provide the brigade of the NRF Land in 2023 again. Altogether eight nations will participate in this major unit. The threads for the various multinational medical portions come together in Koblenz. The lead nation has tasked MMCC/EMC to head the Multinational Medical Working Group (steering element to coordinate the multinational medical forces) for the NRF brigade. The brigade constitutes the spearhead of the NRF.

Concept for the development of medical capabilities

Initial focus of efforts is the conceptual buildup of the multinational medical forces. In this process, it is determined by consensus which nation can make which medical contribution to the NATO brigade. "These contributions range from the commitment of materiel through to individual posts," says Lieutenant Colonel Stephan Wüsthoff, head of the multinational planning body. He admits, "Planning is much easier when representatives of the participating nations are permanently on site, as is the case at MMCC/EMC".

Quick finalisation an early and lasting success

A soldier standing at his desk and looking into the camera

In his function as the head of the team for the coordination and planning for the NRF forces, LTC Stephan Wüsthoff is anxious to preserve the expertise for future multinational units

Bundeswehr/Rico Maderthoner

The buildup of forces was followed by the development of the multinational medical concept. This comprehensive concept, which describes the medical procedures, responsibilities and collaboration relationships, meanwhile is in the process of being staffed by the troop-contributing nations of the brigade. This quick development of the concept can be assessed as a success for the nations and MMCC/EMC. The head of the planning group is sure "that this concept will serve as a blueprint for other nations and medical lead units in the future". "Our goal, of course, is to simultaneously develop a data base for this kind of documents to preserve the expertise for future provisions of materiel and forces for NRF", he refers to the result of his efforts.

MMCC/EMC as multinational coordination element

According to the Framework Nations Concept, it is also possible for other NATO partner nations to have MMCC/EMC carry out these coordination tasks for the medical service parts of the provision of NATO forces. "This coordinating function can also be used for the medical forces of the EU Battle Group, the military crisis response forces of the European Union. Here, too, we have contributed our experience and skills," says the Director MMCC/EMC, Brigadier, Medical Corps, Dr Stefan Kowitz with a view to the tasks of his organisation.

Germany as Framework Nation for the spearhead of NATO

Together with the Netherlands and Norway, Germany - all three forming the Lead Nation Group - will provide the lead unit for NRF(L) 2022 -2024. The focus, here, will be the buildup of the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force Land 2023 (VJTF(L)) as part of the NATO Response Force. This rapidly deployable force was initiated at the Wales NATO Summit in 2014.

by Rico Maderthoner 

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