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Article
April 7, 1956

NATIONAL MEDICAL CIVIL DEFENSE PLANNING AND REQUIREMENTS

JAMA. 1956;160(14):1195-1201. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.02960490009003
Abstract

• Assembly of 200 improvised hospitals for federal stockpiling was undertaken in order to provide focal points for medical care in the event of attack on our country's vital areas. It is likely that more than 6,000 hospitals ought to be kept available.

There is a need for training of professional nurses in mass casualty care techniques; a civil defense nursing program is concerned with this and related problems. The dentist can also play a vital role, and the American Dental Association has cooperated in stimulating dentists to train for emergency casualty services.

Training courses are necessary for personnel at all levels, including first aid. Many problems arise in this area, especially that of evacuating hospitals.

Preparation for radiological defense includes five distinct training programs and the purchase of much indispensable apparatus. For defense against chemical and biological warfare, systems of detection as well as of treatment are necessary; the attack may be not only on people but also on animals and farm crops. The sanitation program is especially concerned with mass evacuation of target cities, radioactive fall-out and shelters, and the restoration of damaged facilities. In addition to a program for blood and plasma expanders, there must be a stockpiling of other medical supplies, the goal for 1956 being sufficient supplies for a 3,500,000 casualty level.

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