HTE correspondent Marty Kauchak highlights opportunities to support the Pentagon’s quest for medical learning innovation.

After more than 15 years of combat in Afghanistan and another concurrent 13 years of warfare in Iraq, the US Defense Department is stepping up its efforts to improve and advance learning technologies for its healthcare community. One effort to get innovation from paper into the hands of military evaluators is led by the Joint Program Committee-1 (JPC-1). The entity is the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command's research area directorate that was established in 2010.

The JPC-1 and its process remain “under the radar” of many in the academic community and their industry counterparts.

The JPC-1 is responsible for programming research in two distinct areas. One of particular interest is medical simulation & training. In the true spirit of military “jointness”, this committee works with the services and joint agencies to address shortfalls and requirements as identified by the Military Health System.  Accordingly, the Medical Simulation & Training portfolio of the JPC-1 is focused primarily on the following broad research objectives: combat casualty training, medical practice initiative, patient focused initiative, and developer tools for medical education. More specific recent learning needs identified in tri-service deliberations include: open source/open architecture; modularity and interoperability; and material and virtual reality models – with augmented reality lurking in the background.

Here’s an opportunity for business development teams and academic research offices to raise their awareness about the program.

The JPC-1’s web page http://cdmrp.army.mil/ dmrdp/jpc1msisrp has a wealth of background and current information about its proceedings and technology thrusts. One bit of information gleaned from the web page concerned the fiscal year 2016-17 Defense Medical Research and Development Program. One program opportunity posted this September supported FY17 Developing Models for Military Medical Training from Field Data Collected from Sensors or MATADOR Award.

And here’s another filler for your contact files. Beyond the above web page, community members may go direct to Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs at E-mail usarmy.detrick. medcom-cdmrp.mbx.cdmrp-public-affairs@mail.mil; ATTN: MCMR-CD, 1077 Patchel Street,  Fort Detrick, MD 21702-5024; or Phone: (301) 619-7071 or Fax: (301) 619-7796.