The Walker Dip refers to the cycle of the improvement of care for the battle injured soldier over the course of a conflict, followed by the decline in the skills needed to provide this care during peacetime, and the requisite need to relearn those skills during the next conflict. As the operational tempo of the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq has declined, concerns have arisen regarding whether US military surgeons are prepared to meet the demands of future conflicts. This problem is not unique to the US military, and allied nations have taken creative steps to address the Walker Dip in their own surgical communities. A panel entitled "Military and Civilian Trauma System Integration: Where Have We Come; Where Are We Going and What Can We Learn from Our International Partners" at the 2018 American Association for the Surgery of Trauma meeting brought together a cadre of civilian and military surgeons with experience in this area. The efforts described involved the creation of a new trauma training program in Doha, Qatar, the military civilian partnership in the Netherlands, and the steps taken to address the deficit of penetrating trauma in Sweden. This article focuses on the lessons that can be learned from our allied partners to assure readiness for deployment among military surgeons. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Economic and Value Based Evaluations, level V.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine