On the front line: War Wound SpecialtyTraining for Ukraine’s Front Line Physicians

February 24th marks the second anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine. GRM has been there for 722 of those days.

Responding to an urgent request by the Ukrainian government, GRM is supporting three cohorts of medical teams from the Military Medical Academy, Border GuardsUkraine and National Guards Ukraine, who are tasked with the care of war wounded patients at forward resuscitation facilities and serve as the lead medical trainers for their respective organizations.

During the program, these 15 medical professionals will explore best practice techniques, both in Europe and in the US, for managing complex traumatic injuries, including resource management, team management, and field diagnostics.

The program is tailored to the specific needs and requests of each organization.

Program Objectives


  • Explore best practice techniques for war-related injuries at leading international medical facilities
  • Implement the new skills and concepts learned, considering the local context
  • Help cohorts prepare to share their new kills and knowledge acquired during rotations by implementing TTT (Train-the-Trainer) modules
  • Learn the most efficient and up-to-date techniques and approaches in trauma management
  • Knowledge-exchange and immersion with foreign colleagues
  • Understand how a system of team trauma management works in other environments

Program Schedule


The training cycle as five rotations:

  • Rotation #1 took place in Ukraine in January 2024 and focused on Advanced Surgical Skills for Exposure to Trauma (ASSET).
  • Rotations #2-4 will be held in US and NATO facilities from March – June 2024.
  • Rotation #5 will take place in Ukraine and will focus on applying the new approaches, skills, and knowledge to the local context, ensuring we cover and gap in needs.


While the curriculum will be customized to the physicians’ needs, the following core topics will be covered:

  • Resuscitation
  • Trauma surgery
  • Field surgery
  • Mass casualty management
  • Amputation
  • Burn care

Rotations take place at leading institutions in Chicago, North Carolina, Philadelphia, Amsterdam, Kyiv, Budapest, and beyond.


Program Costs


With travel, equipment, and coordination, the cost of the program is $16,500 for each physician for a total of $247,500 for direct costs.

Expected Results


Save lives. Period.


Increased trauma skills for for front line medical professionals immediately means that more lives will be saved and less people will suffer life-altering injuries.

15 medical specialists will be trained on best practice techniques for complex injury management.

New knowledge and immersion at leading international centers working with military trauma.

Save more lives through capacity building.


The graduates will be prepared to work in a TTT format to share their new knowledge with the next cohort of Ukrainian medical professionals.

Increased knowledge in quantity & quality – the graduates will share their knowledge and provide training to future cohorts.

Establish partnerships with international medical institutions fostering multi-lateral relationships.

Contributing to the evolution of front line medical protocols.


“We need to make sure they don’t die, and reach the next point of evacuation.” – Oleksii, Physician


In The News

730 days of war in Ukraine: Medevac teams provide vital relief

Original posted on WHO, February 24, 2024

Photo credit: WHO/Christopher Black.

730 days

since the escalation of the war

3.7 million people

are currently internally displaced

Over 10,000 civilians

have been killed

Over 30,000 civilians

have been injured

1,603 attacks

on Ukraine’s health-care system

118 health workers

have been killed

As a consequence of war, the Ukrainian health system continues to operate under extreme pressure. Despite its resilience, ongoing challenges make it difficult to support the heavy burden of complex trauma patients, which necessitates medical evacuations (medevac).

Since March 2022, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine’s Medevac Coordination Unit has successfully managed and coordinated over 3500 medical evacuations abroad for patients who required specialist trauma treatment, and oncology, rehabilitation or prosthetic care.

Multiple partners and a complex series of steps are needed to safely transport patients from the first point of care to specialized services in country or abroad.

In January 2023, WHO/Europe responded to a direct request for assistance from Ukraine to support the voluntary return of patients following their treatment abroad. Funding was secured from the European Commission Service for Foreign Policy Instruments and an 18-month medevac and repatriation project was established with the Ministry of Health of Ukraine.

WHO continues to provide technical and operational guidance to the Ministry of Health’s Medevac Coordination Unit, as they further establish themselves as a dedicated project office with 27 operational staff in Kyiv and in other key oblasts.

Since June 2023, the Ministry of Health has coordinated and managed the safe return of 287 patients, of which 23 required specialized medical repatriation transportation provided by project partner Deutsche Flugambulanz.

The Lviv Regional Center for Emergency Medical Care and Disaster Medicine has been enabled to lead on all cross-border patient transfers. Close collaboration is in place with the Medevac Hub Jasionka and several other stakeholders involved in medical evacuation and repatriation. A unique partnership with the charitable foundation Medical Mission enables these operations.

Around 250 interhospital transfers have been supported by project partner Artesans-ResQ, who are embedded within the emergency medical services (EMS) in Dnipro. Of these transfers, 191 were critical patients who required ventilation support during travel. Over 31 918 km have been travelled in transporting such high-risk patients.

Fifty-three EMS staff, at least 2 from each of the 24 oblasts, have completed the participant–internship–instructor critical care training pathway implemented by Artesans-ResQ in close collaboration with the Ukrainian Scientific and Practical Center of Emergency Medical Care and Disaster Medicine.

Photo credit: Artesans Res-Q. Ukrainian EMS participants graduate from the critical care transportation course, Dnipro, February 2024.

“The training has shown that standardization of clinical protocols in critical care transfers is crucial. Having procedures and protocols in place, we will be able to train medical staff involved in patient transportation accordingly and apply the standardized procedures at each stage of patient care, during transportation and handover. Thanks to this, we will have shared protocols not only with local doctors from other teams and regions but also with doctors from abroad. This will help us act faster and improve the quality of assistance provided.” – Dorosheva Nataliia, Head of the Training Department of the Center for Emergency Medical Care and Disaster Medicine of Zaporizhzhia Oblast

“Transportation of an intensive care patient can cause a lot of stress. When medical staff are not familiar with critical care transportation protocols, this can contribute to stress levels. Being familiarized with the protocols, we now know how to conduct a handover and manage an intubated patient during transportation, and how to monitor the patient’s status. We know precisely which critical points to pay attention to. That increases patient safety and helps medical staff manage stress levels.” – Snizhana Holub, Doctor of Emergency Medical Care and Emergency Conditions, Poltava

Photo credit: Global Response Medicine. Ukrainian burns centres receive support from international experts in burn care, November 2023.

Clinical teams across several hospital sites in the eastern part of Ukraine have been supported with access to specialist trauma surgery and burns care expertise provided by project partner Global Response Medicine; 111 acute trauma cases have been consulted on.

Nine fellows have each received 110 days of intensive trauma care training. Some of them experienced, an immersive clinical exchange at the University of Chicago for shared learning with Global Response Medicine.

Photo credit: Global Response Medicine. University of Chicago hosted Ukrainian trauma surgery experts for a clinical observership, December 2023.

“During an internship at the University of Chicago, we had the opportunity to observe the work of surgeons on patients with polytrauma, as well as how the communication system between medical units is set up. We came back with ideas and motivation to improve our practices and processes.” – Viktoriia Korpusenko, General Director of the Clinical Emergency Hospital of the Dnipro City Council

Despite the challenges and impact that the escalation of the war has had on the Ukrainian health-care system, many partnerships and collaborations have been made in response to the Ministry of Health’s request to support medical evacuations and repatriations.


May 2023 Newsletter – Announcing New Partnership with Refugee Health Alliance in Reynosa, MX

Over the last few years, GRM has made a significant impact in Reynosa, Mexico, providing critical medical services to marginalized populations. We have been working together and collaborating with Refugee Health Alliance (RHA), an organization dedicated to serving marginalized and displaced individuals on the U.S.-Mexico border, since 2021. Together, we share a common mission of providing holistic, trauma-informed care and advocating for the well-being of vulnerable populations.

GRM and RHA have been working tirelessly to provide critical medical services to underserved populations on the U.S.-Mexico border in different regions. We are excited to announce a partnership between our organizations to ensure continued access to this critical care in Reynosa. In June 2023, RHA will become the primary organization facilitating the clinics in Reynosa, with GRM moving to a support role. GRM is proud to have worked alongside RHA in pursuit of our shared mission, and we look forward to supporting them as they continue to make a difference in the lives of those they serve.

As we transition our work with RHA, we reflect on our accomplishments, including serving over 23,000 patients, administering more than 40,600 COVID-19 tests, and utilizing over 11,800 donated volunteer hours of medical expertise since 2022. We are proud of our work in Reynosa, and we are excited to see RHA build on our successes.

To learn more about RHA, visit their website at and consider adding them to your list of supported non-profits.

You can also help further the GRM mission, which continues around the world in Ukraine, Iraq, and Kurdistan, by starting a Facebook fundraiser in GRM’s honor, setting up a recurring donation, or spreading the word by sharing our social media posts on Facebook and Instagram.


April 2023 Newsletter – GRM at SDSU “Race and the Borderlands” Conference

This month, the GRM team was invited to present at the binational conference “Race and the Borderlands” hosted by San Diego State University. This conference brings together scholars, practitioners, student organizations, and grassroots movements to collectively consider issues of human rights and racialization in the borderlands. The conference focuses on scholarly collaboration, community building, and the movement of ideas and people in the region. “Race and the Borderlands” offers an opportunity to convene key organizations and thinkers, integrate frameworks for collective action, and launch new collaborations.

Brendon Tucker, GRM’s Reynosa Project Manager, is presenting the “Health Interventions: A Novel Collaboration to Support the Health of Children Asylum Seekers” Panel, alongside Felicia Rangel Samponaro (co-director, Sidewalk School), Victor Cavazos (co-director, Sidewalk School), and Dr. Jyothi Marbin. Brendon will discuss the medical needs of asylum seekers in Reynosa, the safety challenges faced by the GRM medical team and asylum seekers themselves, and the collaboration and partnership between GRM and the Sidewalk School. We’re so proud of Tucker for representing GRM on the academic stage and speaking out about the continued dire need for medical care on the U.S. / Mexico border!

For this month’s newsletter, we want to take the opportunity to raise awareness about a critical issue affecting millions of people worldwide – global borders and the hardships that displaced people face when crossing them.

By the end of 2021, 89.3 million people worldwide were forcibly displaced due to conflict, disaster, violence, persecution, and human rights violations. This staggering number represents the highest level of displacement on record, and it is a humanitarian crisis that demands our attention. Forced migration is fraught with danger, and often means going without consistent and safe shelter, food, water, or medical attention for months or even years at a time. For many, displacement means serious injury, or even death. According to the UNHCR, the number of forcibly displaced or stateless people is expected to increase to 117.2 million in 2023. This problem is not going away anytime soon, and it’s up to us to act.

We must continue to work together to create a world where everyone has the right to health, wellness, and medical care access, regardless of their background, race, religion, or nationality. The Global Response Medicine team believes that health care is a human right, and we stand in solidarity with displaced communities around the world.

We urge you to join us in supporting their cause. To make a meaningful impact and support those in need, please consider visiting our website and making a donation today. Every contribution, no matter how big or small, will help provide vital medical assistance to displaced people, in the borderlands, and across the globe. Your donation can make a real difference in someone’s life.

You can also help further the GRM mission by starting a Facebook fundraiser in GRM’s honor, setting up a recurring donation, or spreading the word by sharing our social media posts on Facebook and Instagram.


March 2023 Newsletter – Tapachula Clinic Closure

When GRM opened our Tapachula Clinic in 2021, an estimated 60,000 people were stranded in Southern Mexico waiting for permission to either resettle or move through the country. Working with local partners and NGOs, Team Tapachula quickly became a major provider of care for those living in the shadows. The need hasn’t disappeared, but support for refugee aid in the region has sharply decreased.

As such, GRM made the difficult decision to end our Tapachula clinical program. In just 22 months, Team Tapachula treated over 22,000 people in limbo at the border of Mexico and Guatemala, both in our stationary clinic, through mobile clinics, and by responding to crises.

Here are some of the major highlights of Team Tapachula’s work since it began in 2021:

  • 5,751 migratory caravan patients treated.
  • 3,000 patients treated at El Estadio Olímpico de Tapachula.
  • 13,691 clinic patient consults.
  • 1,770 OB/GYN patient consults.
  • 293 specialty referrals for medically complex cases.

We are immensely proud of and grateful to everyone who has been a part of our Tapachula family and contributed to changing the lives of more than 22,000 patients over the last 22 months.  This extraordinary work could not have happened without the efforts of Team Tapachula – Project Manager Laura Bonitez, Dr. Gabriela Ramos, Dr. Dielly Gonzalez, Dr. Gerardo Josue Cabrera Becerril, RN Nancy Escalate, and RN Zabdi Alonso. We would also like to recognize the work of other partners who continue to provide support and resources in the area – JSR (Servicio Jesuita Para Refugiados), Una Mano Amiga en la lucha contra el SIDA A.C., Save the Children, Médicos del Mundo, Médecins Sans Frontières, OIM, ACNUR, and the Tapachula City Government.

Although our Tapachula Clinic is now closed, our work around the world is still very much necessary and ongoing. You can help continue the GRM mission by starting a Facebook fundraiser in GRM’s honor, setting up a recurring donation, or spreading the word by sharing our social media posts on Facebook and Instagram.


March 2023 Newsletter – The Ripple Effect

What began as two men wanting to serve others in January 2017 when GRM was founded, turned into helping over 150,000 people around the world. It’s difficult to measure the ultimate impact of helping one person. But studies show that performing an act of kindness inspires the person being helped to continue those acts with kindness other people. A ripple effect has been created that can never be stopped.

We can measure the impact that both Pete Reed and Derek Coleman had after they founded GRM back in January 2017. And while it may be impossible to measure the impact that those 150,000 people who have been served by GRM, we know that the world is a better place as a result. That ripple continues to expand and grow and we are forever grateful.

These are just a few of the many projects GRM has led since its inception:

  • 2017: 10,000 patients, 200 medics trained in Mosul, Iraq.
  • 2019: Medical Humanitarian Assessment for 20,000 people displaced in Yemen.
  • 2019 – Present: 50,000 patient contacts in Mexico.
  • 2021: 2,000 Afghan evacuees receiving medical aid in Philadelphia, USA.
  • 2021: 200 patients plus teaching for 35 nurses and clinicians in Sierra Leone.
  • 2022: 724 surgeries, 79 medevac transports, 1,800 clinicians trained, $350K in equip donated in Ukraine.

You can keep this ripple effect momentum going by starting a Facebook fundraiser in GRM’s honor, setting up a recurring donation, or spreading the word by sharing our social media posts on Facebook and Instagram!


We are in Gaza and Ukraine.

Yesterday, GRM founder Pete Reed and was killed in Bakhmut, Ukraine.

Yesterday, GRM founder Pete Reed was killed in Bakhmut, Ukraine. Pete was the bedrock of GRM, serving as Board President for 4 years. In January, Pete stepped away from GRM to work with Global Outreach Doctors on their Ukraine mission and was killed while rendering aid.

This is a stark reminder of the perils rescue and aid workers face in conflict zones as they serve citizens caught in the crossfire. Pete was just 33 years old, but lived a life in service of others, first as a decorated US Marine and then in humanitarian aid. GRM will strive to honor his legacy and the selfless service he practiced.

We fully support Pete’s family, friends, and colleagues during this devastating time.