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Discovery

BBC World Service

Science & Medicine

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Science & Medicine 36

Explorations in the world of science.

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Trauma at War

November 3rd, 2014

Episode 418 of 565 episodes

They call them 'The Unexpected Survivors'. The casualties from the war in Afghanistan whose injuries were so severe that they were not expected to survive, but who survived nevertheless. In October, after 13 years Britain and the United States officially brought their combat operations in Helmand Afghanistan to an end. Camp Bastion, the coalition stronghold – once one of the largest military bases in the world – has been dismantled leaving a handful of buildings that will now be handed over to the Afghan National Army. First established eight years ago in 2006, Camp Bastion came to host to one of the most extraordinary and successful trauma medical systems ever seen. Amongst the medics that went to and served in Afghanistan were doctors who trained with me in civilian hospitals. With the mission nearly at an end I had to see them and their system for myself, to try and understand just how it came to be and why it worked so well. Photo courtesy of Ministry of Defence

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