Swedish soldiers in Afghanistan. Photo: Swedish Armed Forces/Scanpix.

Medical Staff Needed in Afghanistan

Despite an increased threat to Swedish soldiers in Afghanistan the medical staff in the area are not fully staffed. Due to recruitment difficulties, both an anaesthesiologist and a surgeon are needed to join the Swedish force.

Tomas Arvidsson, Senior Medical Officer for the Swedish force in Afghanistan told Swedish Radio News that this means that the medical unit doesn’t have access to the expertise necessary for treating soldiers in the field.

There's meant to be two so called Forward Surgical Teams , units that can be on the scene quickly if a Swedish soldier is severely injured. At present there is only one such team – and that team is a surgeon and an anaesthesiologist short. The Swedish military says to Radio News that they are aware of the situation and that every effort is being made to fill the vacancies. However, they wouldn’t say whether or not the shortness of staff had an impact on the treatment of the Swedish soldiers injured last week.

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