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Can J Surg. 2011 Dec;54(6):S118-23. doi: 10.1503/cjs.025011.

Tactical combat casualty care in the Canadian Forces: lessons learned from the Afghan war.

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Canadian Forces Health Services and the Division of General Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario.


Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) is intended to treat potentially preventable causes of death on the battlefield, but acknowledges that application of these treatments may place the provider and even the mission in jeopardy if performed at the wrong time. Therefore, TCCC classifies the tactical situation with respect to health care provision into 3 phases (care under fire, tactical field care and tactical evacuation) and only permits certain interventions to be performed in specific phases based on the danger to the provider and casualty. In the 6 years that the Canadian Forces (CF) have been involved in sustained combat operations in Kandahar, Afghanistan, more than 1000 CF members have been injured and more than 150 have been killed. As a result, the CF gained substantial experience delivering TCCC to wounded soldiers on the battlefield. The purpose of this paper is to review the principles of TCCC and some of the lessons learned about battlefield trauma care during this conflict.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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