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NEWS | Feb. 4, 2022

Army Reserve medical units change structure

By Spc. Ronald Bell 807th Medical Command (Deployment Support)

From lessons learned in Afghanistan and Iraq to an internal analysis from the Army Medical Department, transformational goals supported a decision to redesign the Combat Support Hospital (CSH) structure to a ‘plug and play’ concept. In September 2018, the 807th Medical Command (Deployment Support) began the conversion and realignment of the CSH to Field Hospitals and Hospital Centers to create a more mobile, flexible and expeditionary medical force.

The CSH replaced mobile surgical Army hospitals and evacuation hospitals during the Vietnam War, but was rarely deployed as a full CSH into a theater of operations. Systematic and critical review of the organizational structure, mobility, split operational capabilities, internal medical capabilities, surgical capabilities, personnel specialties, and dependencies affecting the hospital’s capabilities and functions during deployment reinforced the need for unit structure modification.

Redesign efforts culminated in the development of the Hospital Center and Field Hospital, a new Role 3 hospital structure comprised of five modular units with inherent capabilities providing mission-specific medical and surgical health service support. This realignment and conversion is designed to increase medical capabilities, foster greater efficiencies, and facilitate enhanced mission command allowing deployment of a functional capability (e.g. Intensive Care Ward, a surgical team, ground ambulance company or medical logistics) versus an unnecessary whole unit for a single function.

The ten CSHs in the 807th MC (DS) will convert to 14 Field Hospitals and seven Hospital Centers by fiscal year 2023. Field Hospitals and Hospital Centers will be supported by 25 Medical Detachments consisting of a 60 bed Intensive Care Wards, 32 bed Medical Detachment and 24 bed Surgical Medical Detachment. Combat Stress Control, and Forward Surgical Resuscitative Detachments, and Ground Ambulances Companies which were assigned from U.S. Army Reserve Command can also be augmented in to the Field Hospital when more resources are needed.

Combat Support Hospitals are notified of their upcoming conversion, have one fiscal year to prepare, and to complete the conversion process.