DOD’s medical innovations save lives, speed rehab

Despite the official conclusion of America’s longest war at the end of 2014, American troops are still deployed in hostile environments all over the world.  Ensuring soldiers’ safety is a top priority of the Defense Department both on and off the battlefield, so researchers have been hard at work testing and deploying the latest technological solutions for health, safety, response and rehabilitation.

For immediate assessment in battlefield conditions, Army researchers showcased one of their latest developments in triage at the Defense Department’s recent Lab Day.  The Compensatory Reserve Index, or CRI is a small device — roughly the size of a matchbox — with a computer display.  When placed on an injured soldier’s finger , the device displaying and wirelessly transmits vital signs, such as body temperature, heart rate, breathing rate and blood pressure, according to an Army statement.

The severity of injuries sustained are not always readily apparent, so the CRI is especially helpful in that it reads multiple vital signs almost immediately, letting medics prioritize triage care.

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