HELPING REBUILD the country's devastated health care system is not the only extraordinary part of the US military medical mission in Haiti. More than at any time in history, US Army medical personnel are working closely with the medical units of other armed forces. If the United States participates in future United Nations (UN) peacekeeping missions, such joint military medical operations may become routine.
When the US-led multinational force occupied Haiti in September 1994 for the purpose of removing the military dictatorship and restoring democracy, they brought with them one of the most sophisticated, transportable health care systems in the world. When the UN took over the mission in March 1995, the United States assumed the responsibility of providing most of the health care for the entire operation, a job that requires working closely with military contingents from 11 other nations.
"The US military is the only organization in the