Medics of War - Unknown Troops, Forgotten Losses

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Medics of War - Unknown Troops, Forgotten Losses


Quiet feat of military medical service


During the Great Patriotic War, losses among military doctors, nurses, orderlies and nurses were in second place after the losses of rifle units. According to the results of the war, they accounted for 12,5% ​​of those killed out of 700 thousand medical personnel.



Medical workers were often in the thick of battles, but the monstrous damage in the frames was caused not only and not so much by this. Alas, but in the Red Army, which was preparing for the war as best it could, in all directions, by the summer of 1941, a well-developed military medical service had not been created.

Hitler, skillfully misleading Soviet intelligence, and here caught ours at a turning point, perestroika - those very sanitary battalions were just being created. Yes, and such a scale of wars in stories there was no new country at that time.

The experience of the First World War was not taken seriously, as absolutely unsuccessful. At the same time, even the fact that losses from diseases, compared with combat losses, in the Civil War was a much more significant share than in the imperialist war, was completely ignored.

Not to revive, but to create


Only in 1933 did the USSR think about creating some kind of unified military medical service. Then a conference of military field surgery was held in Leningrad. But the military field medical service itself began to be seriously formed only in 1940, when the Second World War had already begun. The situation in the world has heated up to the limit, and the USSR has already had to fight, moreover, on different fronts.

At the direction of the General Staff of the Red Army, leading military doctors began to hastily develop documents regulating their activities. The chief surgeon of the Red Army, Nikolai Burdenko, who was later called the "Marshal of Medicine", complained about the possible "confusion in the organization of medical care and methods of treating the wounded."

With the outbreak of war, without yet fully assessing the degree of threat, the command began to send qualified cadres of military field doctors to the front. But as the German offensive began to call and unfired civilian experts, many of whom were volunteers.

If in Nazi Germany fighters were pulled out of the battlefield mainly by armed men, then in the USSR there was simply not enough weaponsto give it to the nurses who dragged the wounded healthy men to the points where they were bandaged and operated on.

They worked according to the method of Pirogov: no matter how cruel it was, the hopeless wounded were carried out last, and such an opportunity was far from always. The nurses' training courses worked in a rush mode, ahead of the courses of military schools, and at the same time they were taught to shoot.

The question of where to get the weapon was decided in fact by itself. They took it from the wounded themselves, especially since additional and considerable rewards were assigned for taking out the wounded with weapons. In particular, when issuing awards to nurses and nurses, only the removal of the wounded with weapons from the battlefield was counted.

If there were not enough tools and medicines, then there was no question of blood for transfusion. Often, the doctors and nurses themselves, with the same blood types and Rh factors, they and the wounded lay down at the first-aid post for direct transfusion.


Perhaps the best monument to a military nurse is erected in Cherepovets, which during the war years turned into one large military hospital

Military medicine goes on the offensive


The Great Patriotic War gave a powerful impetus to the development of new treatment technologies in the USSR. Often they were developed by ordinary military surgeons from field hospitals. Although, of course, mostly practitioners with dissertations were the developers.

In particular, it was during the war years that Soviet scientists developed the drug thrombin, which quickly clots blood, the NIISI polio vaccine against typhoid fever, paratyphoid A and B, dysentery, cholera and tetanus, which affected many fighters, and the civilian population too.

At the height of the battles, domestic microbiology began to produce penicillin-crustosin; the shelf life of donated blood was extended, and a vitamin preparation to combat scurvy was put into production. And how many lives have been saved by the anti-tularemia vaccine, which has been forgotten today, available means for the prevention of influenza, the drug Vikasol to increase blood clotting, blood substitutes for transfusion.

Many scientists worked then right on the front line. In particular, it was in military field conditions that a preparation based on bovine blood "Gemokostol" was developed. Initially, it was planned to be used to speed up the rehabilitation of the wounded, but it turned out that it also helps fight an infectious disease known as night blindness.

After the start of the counter-offensive, things went much better for military doctors. The quality of work also increased, as doctors and junior staff appeared who already understood what war was, and funding from the state improved.

As a result, more than 70% of the wounded returned to duty, and 90% of the sick. These figures exceed those of Germany and its satellites.

How about glory?


The state, which already at the beginning of the German offensive was completely unexpected by such events, introduced government awards not only for military doctors, but also for orderlies and porters.

Already in August 1941, an order was issued by the People's Commissar of Defense, according to which medals "For Military Merit" or "For Courage" were relied on for the removal from the battlefield of 15 wounded with weapons, the Order of the Red Star for the removal of 25 wounded with weapons, and the Order for 40 wounded Red Banner, for 80 wounded - the Order of Lenin.

Among the military doctors were Heroes of the Soviet Union, many posthumously. It often happened that medical workers themselves either used weapons against the enemy for their intended purpose, or covered the wounded with their bodies. Cases have also been noted when medical officers, in the event of the death of the commanders of rifle subunits, took command of them.

Among the battles of the Great Patriotic War, the Battle of Stalingrad stands out - it is unrivaled in awarding medical service fighters. 20 military doctors were awarded the Order of Lenin in the battles near Stalingrad and for the city itself, many posthumously.


People in bathrobes soaked in blood really worked hard, sometimes for days without sleep and rest. The work of surgeons was actually put on the conveyor. Fainting among them right during operations was not uncommon.

During the war, about five thousand people died among military doctors, mostly surgeons, and more than nine thousand among paramedical workers. Of course, these figures are not comparable with the losses among medical orderlies and porters, but their number at the front was much larger.

It cannot be said that Soviet medicine did not take into account the experience of the Great Patriotic War. Only 36 medical officers died during the Afghan war. Although the conditions of service were still difficult, mainly due to power outages and problems with drinking water.

It was in Afghanistan that Soviet military medicine applied some innovations. And it's not just about modern medicines or equipment. Very often, the simplest solutions became salvation.

In particular, it was the doctors who insisted that the fighters wear hemostatic tourniquets on the barrels of machine guns, and in their pockets were portable filters for water from karez, teeming with bacteria. According to doctors who were in Afghanistan, they saw a lot of medicines and medical equipment that were in short supply in the Union for the first time in that war.
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  1. +6
    February 24 2023
    In particular, it was the doctors who insisted that the fighters wear hemostatic tourniquets on the barrels of machine guns.

    How and why do this? There were tourniquets on the butts, so the doctors, on the contrary, grumbled about it, and did not encourage it. Only shells from rocket launchers were worn on the barrels.
    1. +7
      February 24 2023
      Quote: Gvardeetz77
      There were harnesses on the butts, so the doctors, on the contrary, grumbled at it

      I perfectly understand why, because I know perfectly well what the tourniquet turns into. stupidly lying in the sun, forgotten on the windowsill for example. As far as I heard, the tourniquet was wound around the butt from burns, it does not let heat through from heated lacquered wood or from metal. And the wound tourniquet ... Well, in a week I will most likely tear it with my hands easily, the hardened tourniquet only cracks and tears like that
    2. +6
      February 24 2023
      wassat
      It was in Afghanistan that Soviet military medicine applied some innovations. And it's not just about modern medicines or equipment. Very often, the simplest solutions became salvation.
      In particular, the it was the doctors who insisted that the fighters wear hemostatic tourniquets on the barrels of machine guns

      Hmm, "there are adults at home," when are such articles written?

      The Afghan, of course, is difficult to outdo, but there are no obstacles for medicine: “In the future, the final figure increased slightly. as follows[1]:
      Soviet Army - 14
      KGB - 576 (including 514 border troops [2])
      Ministry of Internal Affairs - 28
      Total - 15 people.
      Sanitary losses - 53 wounded, shell-shocked, injured; 415 932 cases[3]. Of the sick infectious hepatitis - 115 people, typhoid fever - 308, other infectious diseases - 31 people.
      Out of 11 people 294 of those discharged from military service for health reasons remained disabled, of which 10 were in the 751st group, 1 in the 672nd group, and 2 in the 4216rd group[3]."
      Where only the KGB looked, it is not clear.

      If we take the glorious statistics "from Afghanistan to Chechnya" in relation to "killed and wounded", then I would like to recall Comrade Beria and Stalin, but personally I do not support this.
      1. +4
        February 24 2023
        But nothing that the events in Afghanistan lasted 9 years? And there was never a walk.
        As for surpassing, then do not hesitate, the Russian army will definitely surpass Afghan in this indicator, if it has not already surpassed it.
        And I'm not even talking about absolute figures, but specific indicators.
        The article did not mention one of the most important factors for survival and the return to service of injured personnel. Namely, how quickly it will be delivered by medical units to provide assistance. And in this case, helicopters turned out to be the most indispensable. The saturation of which troops was the highest. The army of the Russian Federation cannot even dream of such a thing.
        1. +3
          February 24 2023
          But nothing that the events in Afghanistan lasted 9 years? And there was never a walk.

          And nothing.
          If you 415 thousand losses by the sick, it means that medical provision is ..... Starting from water, food and hygiene.

          the army of the Russian Federation according to this indicator, Afghan will definitely surpass

          Well, how about. Even about individual first-aid kits, VO already writes and only a lazy person does not shoot a video.
          But since VO is still a source of useful information, let's consider the KNOW-HOW of modern military medicine in the Russian Federation. Request to admins - do not demolish the video of Intelligence, maybe it will save someone's life

          https://youtu.be/Wds6QSj9de4

          [media=https://youtu.be/8z4SDs3q_Fk]
          https://youtu.be/8z4SDs3q_Fk


          https://youtu.be/iwnJzyGWGlY

          one of the most important factors for survival and the return to service of injured personnel .... in this matter, helicopters turned out to be the most indispensable. The saturation of which troops was the highest. The army of the Russian Federation cannot even dream of such a thing.


          Hmm .. how everything is running .... Especially about helicopters.
          We must call a pro named R. Marchenko, he is a longtime admirer of the Soviet / Russian military medical, his statistics, especially - "return to duty". https://rostislavddd.livejournal.com/

          1. 'One of the most significant reasons for the high mortality rate of the wounded of the Soviet / Russian Army at the initial stages of evacuation, with subsequent write-off of their dead, can be called the low percentage of medical personnel providing personnel and the corresponding medical and technical equipment.. First of all, on the battlefield and near it.

          With regard to the actual provision of the medical service of the BTGr-2 1 Guards Tank Troop at the initial stage of this war, this ratio was 7:318, or 1:45 (45,42), where instead of a captain with a higher medical education, the head of the medical service of the battalion was an ensign (warrant officer) with a secondary special.
          And how are they there, in the unspiritual West? “What do we see at the division level? A staffing of 1021 officers and 15 enlisted men, sergeants and warrant officers is provided by 890 military medics, of which 893 are officers.
          The ratio of "linear" personnel to the l / s of the medical service 1:19 (18,94)"

          2. "In terms of the level of successful strategic operations, the excellent ratio of wounded to killed for the Red Army in the second half of 1943-1945 can be derived from 1 - 3,2. Ideal 1 -- 4.
          Losses of Soviet troops in Afghanistan:
          Killed and died: 14764 people.
          Wounded, shell-shocked and burned: 53753 people.
          Missing and captured: 287 people.
          The ratio of losses (irretrievable losses - sanitary losses): 1 - 3,57

          Let's move on to the First War in Chechnya:
          ...
          The ratio of losses (irretrievable losses - sanitary losses): 1 - 2,89

          October 1, 1999 to December 23, 2002 ...
          The ratio of losses (irretrievable losses - sanitary losses): 1 - 3,22

          As a result of the Korean War, the losses of the USMC amounted to ...
          The ratio of losses (irretrievable losses - sanitary losses): 1 - 5,27

          During the war in Iraq, which, I remind you, was actually going on simultaneously with the war in Chechnya, the loss of the US Armed Forces ....
          The ratio of losses (irretrievable losses - sanitary losses): 1 - 7,16"

          Well, "multi-book", the author as a whole, IMHO, is right: "Taking into account about three hundred missing, the ratio of dead Soviet soldiers to those wounded in the Afghan war was 1: 3,64. Read remained approximately the same as at the end of the Great Patriotic War and one and a half times inferior to the Americans in Vietnam twenty years earlier.
          And why did it happen? And it happened because a closed bureaucratic structure that is not responsible to the consumer of its services always closes on serving its own interests exclusively and, as a result, always tends to zero in terms of its effectiveness. If in simpler words, then "the seriously wounded are killed but do not know about it."
          "
          1. -4
            February 25 2023
            And nothing.
            If you have a loss of 415 sick people, then this means that medical care is ..... Starting from water, food and hygiene.


            Let's not lie about what you don't know.
            Firstly, 415 thousand is never a loss, the percentage of those who did not return to duty is extremely low.
            Secondly, it is possible to protect yourself from infectious diseases in potentially dangerous areas unless you remove the entire gas mask and OZK service. It is enough to inhale the same dust and that's it. I'm not even talking about cases of deliberate infection practiced by some conscripts.

            Well, how about. Even about individual first-aid kits, VO already writes and only a lazy person does not shoot a video.


            And what was wrong with that, in Afghanistan, each serviceman had an individual package, and they were not in short supply.

            Hmm .. how everything is running .... Especially about helicopters.


            Hmm ... how everything is running ... when another couch strategist enlightens a helicopter pilot. lol

            That's pretty much how they worked.

            We must call a pro named R. Marchenko, he is a longtime admirer of the Soviet / Russian military medical, his statistics, especially "return to duty."


            Since when did LJ become evidence?

            1. "One of the most significant reasons for the high mortality rate of the wounded of the Soviet / Russian Army in the initial stages of evacuation, followed by writing them off as dead, can be called the low percentage of medical personnel providing personnel and the corresponding medical and technical equipment. First of all, on the battlefield and near it .


            That is, in your opinion, the composition of the groups going to the mountains should have had nowhere to stuff doctors and even honey. load equipment?
            It is curious, but how do you imagine it, holding honey. mountain operations?
            Sorry, but there is no better solution than to inject the victim with the appropriate drug, stop the bleeding and EVACUATE ASAP. Moreover, just on the helicopter are prof. healthcare workers and related equipment. Mi-8, this is not some kind of bullshit like "Iroquois", everything will pull.

            In relation to the actual provision of the medical service of the BTGr-2 of the 1st Guards Tank Troop at the initial stage of this war, this ratio was 7: 318, or 1: 45 (45,42), where instead of a captain with a higher medical education, the ensign was the head of the medical service of the battalion (warrant officer) with secondary special."
            And how are they there, in the unspiritual West? “What do we see at the division level? A staffing of 1021 officers and 15 enlisted men, sergeants and warrant officers is provided by 890 military medics, of which 893 are officers.
            The ratio of "linear" personnel to the l / s of the medical service is 1: 19 (18,94) "


            Are you an expert on warm versus soft? This is what your numbers look like, two random samples of who knows what. First, try to compare all OKSVA medical workers, including civilian personnel. Plus, consider the hospitals in the USSR that worked for Afghanistan.
            Therefore, it is not necessary to say what kind of advanced west there is. Our experience in this matter was much greater by the beginning of Afghanistan.


            Well, the “multi-bookf”, the author as a whole, IMHO, is right: “Taking into account the order of three hundred missing, the ratio of dead Soviet servicemen to the wounded in the Afghan war was 1: 3,64. Read remained approximately the same as at the end of the Great Patriotic War and one and a half times inferior to the Americans in Vietnam twenty years earlier.
            And why did it happen? And it happened because a closed bureaucratic structure that is not responsible to the consumer of its services always closes on serving its own interests exclusively and, as a result, always tends to zero in terms of its effectiveness. If in simpler words, then "the seriously wounded are killed but do not know about it."


            Exactly, there are a lot of letters, but you have zero understanding?
            What fright did you decide that the ratio of 1:3,64 is bad, and 1:7,16 is much better? On the contrary, the higher number of sanitary losses just shows the disgusting work of military medicine. The wounded, instead of returning to duty, join the ranks of the disabled.
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    3. +7
      February 24 2023
      Good afternoon.
      I also drew attention to the harnesses on the barrels of machine guns. Brad of course.
      But besides female doctors, there were also women about whom little is written. The same laundresses. How many bloody robes, bandages and clothes did they wash?
      And they donated blood for the wounded.
      The work is exhausting and hard. Hot and cold water, soap, everything affected the hands and skin.
      There was an article on VO about bath and laundry trains, but you can’t fit your train with a bath to each hospital or medical unit.
      1. +8
        February 24 2023
        The harnesses were wound not on trunks, but on folding stocks. Having previously stuffed an individual package into the frame.
  2. +6
    February 24 2023
    I will repeat the phrase of the sergeant of the medical service in the communications brigade
    before leaving for exercises with an abundance of ticks with encephalitis.
    "It's cheaper to shoot you than to inject this interferon."
    He lay twice in the garrison hospital, also not sugar
    memories.
    1. +6
      February 24 2023
      That's it!
      That is why I am always wary of male doctors. .
      Himself, stupid, he doesn’t know a damn thing, he can only swipe to the extreme with promedol, and then rake himself out. Moor did his job...
      How are cattle treated?
      For what?
      A person is hurt and sick ...
      What's up with the Hippocratic Oath?
      Not a dust
      And you can't prove anything
      1. +9
        February 24 2023
        Quote: Dmitry_7
        That is why I am always wary of male doctors. .
        Himself, stupid, does not know a shit

        You just got unlucky...
        It all depends on the individual. I know many examples of very high-class specialists.

        Quote: Dmitry_7
        What's up with the Hippocratic Oath?

        There are so many interesting things... winked
      2. +5
        February 24 2023
        Quote: Dmitry_7
        What's up with the Hippocratic Oath?

        It's just that there is a military medic Hippocrates and a civilian Hippocrates ̶z̶d̶o̶r̶o̶v̶o̶g̶o̶))) (Joke) Specifically, military medics do not need to think about "economic efficiency", which means that even in this he will be more humane ...
    2. +9
      February 24 2023
      From my own hospital memories. I ended up in the hospital with untreated pneumonia, on the verge of losing consciousness, droppers, three days of bed rest, in short, pulmonology. After a couple of weeks, they kick me out on the street for half a day, "to work." I openly tell the lieutenant colonel, the attending physician: "If I am so healthy that I can work on the street in cold shoes for half a day, then write me out to the unit, I will recover faster there." Answer: "I myself know when to discharge you." Severomorsk, central hospital, April 1992.
  3. +8
    February 24 2023
    During the Great Patriotic War, losses among military doctors, nurses, orderlies and nurses were in second place after the losses of rifle units. According to the results of the war, they accounted for 12,5% ​​of those killed out of 700 thousand medical staff
    .
    Among the battles of the Great Patriotic War, the Battle of Stalingrad stands out - it is unrivaled in awarding medical service fighters. 20 military doctors were awarded the Order of Lenin in the battles near Stalingrad and for the city itself, many posthumously.



    In the USSR, her name was widely known. She has been acting in films since the age of 3. She has six films under her belt. She was predicted an acting future, but at the end of 1941 she volunteered for the front. In the spring of 1942, as a medical instructor at the MedSanBat, the 780th regiment of the 214th Infantry Division of the 24th Army was sent to Stalingrad. Participated in battles in the Stalingrad region from July 16, 1942
    From the award list:
    On November 23, 1942, during the battle for a height of 56,8, she carried 50 wounded soldiers from the battlefield, and when the commander was killed, she raised the soldiers to attack, the first broke into the enemy trench, killed 15 German soldiers and officers with several throws of grenades. She was mortally wounded, but continued to fight until reinforcements arrived ...
  4. +9
    February 24 2023
    If in Nazi Germany soldiers were pulled from the battlefield mainly by armed men, then in the USSR there simply were not enough weapons to give them to nurses who dragged wounded healthy men to the points where they were bandaged and operated on.

    This is a very common myth.
    If on the website "Feat of the People" you score in the search for a nurse, you will see

    Most of the orderlies were men, yes there were women, but mostly they were at the reception points. And photo correspondents usually took photos in the rear, so there are a lot of nurses in the photo .. By the way, nurses were the most awarded category after scouts. In the Russian army and the Soviet one, it was accepted that for the evacuation from the battlefield an officer in the Russian army was given the St. George Cross, and in the Red Army, an order.
    Well, as for the Wehrmacht, women didn’t serve there at all.
    1. +14
      February 24 2023
      Sergeant Semyon Vasilyevich Gretsov. He is the only one who managed to receive 6 medals "For Courage" during the entire war. Just think - 6! And who was Gretsov? Scout? Artilleryman? Tanker? Sniper? No, he was a medical officer in the 1214th Infantry Regiment of the 364th Infantry Division.
  5. +13
    February 24 2023
    I have a photo of my grandmother's brother. Before the war, he graduated from a medical assistant's school and served on an ambulance train throughout the war. Photo May 45th. And I never saw him smile

    Junior lieutenant of the medical service Vasily Sergeevich Zhukov.
  6. +13
    February 24 2023
    A deep bow to military doctors - doctors, paramedics, sisters, nurses and orderlies! How many people thanks to them returned from that, and other wars! hi love drinks
  7. +6
    February 24 2023
    A really big problem in Afghanistan was the notorious "jaundice" ... it mowed down the ranks very much. I personally knew a military medical officer, I don’t remember what position he had at that time, but he was awarded for the fact that the losses from hepatitis were minimal Red Star.
    1. +4
      February 24 2023
      The real big problem in Afghanistan was the notorious "jaundice".

      Well, her vaccine was still tolerable. But from typhus, after the first "dose" they lay side by side with a temperature of under 40. On the second day - the second dose. They tried to hide and hide. So the doctor complained to the authorities. It ended up that the commander gave a lecture about "who we were born from" and that the state spends a lot of money on such noobs (it turns out that all these "gammaglobulins" and so on are an expensive thing). In general, these vaccinations were stable once every couple of months for a year. And the water from the well hissed from the bleach like soda. A couple of people fell ill with jaundice in the squadron during the year - and that's it.
  8. +6
    February 24 2023
    The Red commanders were preparing to fight with "little blood"; under "little blood" they also planned medical capacities.
    But in general, the author's theses in the form
    Alas, but in the Red Army, which was preparing for the war as best it could, in all directions, by the summer of 1941, a well-developed military medical service had not been created.
    very doubtful. Does the author have documents confirming this thesis?
    Are there directives from NGOs or the Headquarters of the Supreme High Command about emergency work in medicine?
    Without such documents, this is an alhistorical fable ...

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