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The Future of Military Medicine: Lt. Gen. Robert Miller, MD, US Air Force Surgeon General.

In a recent episode of the WarDocs podcast, we had an insightful conversation with Lieutenant General Robert I. Miller, Surgeon General of the US Air Force and US Space Force. They discussed Lt. Gen. Miller's journey into Air Force Medicine, the importance of Pediatrics in Military Medicine, and the unique challenges of ensuring a Ready Medical Force prepared for future conflicts. Additionally, the episode delved into the continuous learning in military leadership roles, the challenges and accomplishments of the Defense Health Agency, and the groundbreaking mission of the Air Force Medical Service. The conversation also explored the future of Air Force Medicine, including the development of wearables and the use of virtual medicine for patient care in various environments.

Importance of Pediatrics in Military Medicine:

During the podcast, Lt. Gen. Miller highlighted the significance of Pediatrics in Military Medicine and the various opportunities for Pediatric residencies and fellowships in Air Force Medicine. The conversation also covered the training and responsibilities of a Flight Surgeon and how they differ between the Air Force, Army, and Navy. Lt. Gen. Miller shared personal experiences from the front lines, including serving as a flight doctor in conflict zones and the challenges of providing medical care in difficult conditions. The expeditionary medical system (eMeds) was also discussed, emphasizing its role in providing life-saving surgery and care in the field.

Continuous Learning in Military Leadership Roles:

The impact of 9/11 on Military Medicine led to a discussion on the importance of readiness and continuous learning in leadership roles. Lt. Gen. Miller spoke about the relevance of strategic studies and MBAs for military physicians, as well as the role of the defense health agency in supporting medical education and training. The conversation also touched on the unique challenges faced in deployments, such as dealing with non-battle injuries and the experience of working with the US Africa Command to create stability through health initiatives.

Air Force Medic Readiness:

The interview examined the challenges and accomplishments of the Defense Health Agency (DHA) and its role in training enlisted medical professionals. Lt. Gen. Miller discussed the partnership between Uniformed Services University and the DHA, which helps young medics earn degrees and certifications for their military and post-military careers. The relationship between the DHA and the Air Force Medical Operation Agency in providing healthcare benefits and focusing on a Ready Medical Force was also explored.

Trusted Care in Air and Space:

The groundbreaking mission of the Air Force Medical Service (AFMS) to provide trusted care anytime, anywhere, including the potential challenges of medical care in space, was discussed during the podcast. Lt. Gen. Miller mentioned the MEDIC X program, created to develop multi-capable medics for various situations, and the importance of supporting the mental health and resiliency of medics. The significant role of medics during the COVID-19 pandemic and other recent crises was also highlighted, emphasizing the importance of their trusted care in various challenging situations.

The Future of Air Force Medicine:

The podcast explored the future of Air Force Medicine, including the development of wearables such as the Battlefield Assisted Trauma Distributed Observation Kit (BATDOK) and the use of virtual medicine for patient care in various environments. Lt. Gen. Miller also discussed the importance of the Air Force Medical Service's air evacuation mission and the role of the total force, including the Guard and Reserve, in providing lifesaving care. Additionally, the conversation touched on the value of reading and mentorship for personal and professional growth and the significance of developmental and behavioral Pediatrics in supporting military families.


The conversation with Lieutenant Lt. Gen. Robert I. Miller, MD, provided valuable insights into the world of Military Medicine and the future of Air Force Medicine. The development of wearables, the use of virtual medicine, and the mission of the Air Force Medical Service demonstrate the innovative and life-saving work being done within this field. As we continue to face new challenges and conflicts, the importance of a Ready Medical Force and the dedication of military medics will remain an essential aspect of national security and global stability.

The interview with Lt. Gen Miller is available on all major podcast platforms. Here are some popular links that will bring you directly to the episode:

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