COL Prof. Frederic Dorandeu PharmD, Ph.D.
Future Forces Forum
Chairman NATO CBRN Med WG, Head of Toxicology Research Department, IRBA
French Academy of Pharmacy
Medical Contribution to NATO CBRN Defence: an Overview
Since 2013, sarin, chlorine and sulfur mustard have repeatedly been used in the Irak-Syria war zone. This proves that the threat from the deliberate use of chemical agents has not diminished although its nature has evolved. Proliferation of nuclear weapons is also a matter of great concern. Finally, although of natural origin, the Ebola virus crisis reinforced the need for a global preparation against outbreaks of diseases that would be deliberately initiated. Proliferation and scientific advances that may reshape the threat that NATO is facing require similar agility from the medical services. Despite more than 10 years of operations in Afghanistan where CBRN was not considered a prime threat, NATO kept a close attention to CBRN scenarios and developed new doctrines, equipment and training. To support the Surgeon Generals from NATO (Committee of the Chiefs of Military Medical Services in NATO, COMEDS), and partner countries, the CBRN medical working group initiates and develops common principles, policies, concepts, doctrines, procedures, techniques, programmes and initiatives in the whole CBRN medical capability field. It supports Allied Command Operations (ACO) and Allied Command Transformation (ACT) for all CBRN medical matters, from doctrine to training. It keeps liaison with all other relevant COMEDS WG, the military medicine centre of excellence (MILMED COE) as well as the NATO CBRN defence community (Joint CBRN Defence– capability development group, JCBRND-CDG, and its panels, WMD centre) and the Joint CBRN defence COE. In this talk, the main concepts and doctrine of medical support to operations when CBRN threat is no longer a fantasy will be presented. The fact that medical countermeasures and casualty care is one of the five enabling components for CBRN defence and that the medical component also significantly contributes to the other four pillars will be emphasized.
Colonel Professor Dr (PharmD, PhD) Frederic Dorandeu, is currently head of the Toxicology and Chemical risks research department at the Armed Forces Biomedical Research Institute (Institut de Recherche Biomédicale des Armées, IRBA) in Brétigny-sur-Orge (France) and its deputy director of research. After his pharmacy doctorate in 1990, he first served in a military hospital before joining the La Tronche research centre (CRSSA) in 1993. Working on the central toxicity of some snake venom toxins, he obtained his PhD in Neurosciences of the university of Grenoble in 1998. After having led a small team on the treatment of nerve agent-induced seizures and brain damage, he now has the responsibility for research in medical countermeasures against nerve agents and vesicants. He holds French army CBRN defence qualifications and in the USA and UK for CBRN casualty management. He also received HAZMAT training with the civilian fire-fighters and could be deployed with chemical assessment teams. He was part of the UNMOVIC chemical inspectors’ roster. Since 2009, he is the scientific advisor to the French Surgeon general for medical countermeasures against chemical risks. He is currently chairman of NATO COMEDS/NSO CBRN medical working group and a member of the NATO STO/HFM/RTG 253 research group. His professorship position at the military “Ecole du Val-de-Grâce” in Paris leads him to be involved in teaching toxicology, medical defence against chemical warfare agents and CBRN defence. He also teaches these subjects in different universities to enhance awareness and face the terrorist threat. He is a full member of the French national academy of pharmacy.