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The KFS at an expert discussion on strengthening the healthcare system in the event of war

News from Apr 17, 2024

On Wednesday, April 10, 2024, Prof. Martin Voss took part in an expert discussion hosted by the Health Committee of the German Bundestag. In the discussion, various experts were asked about the challenges facing the healthcare system in the event of war and the resulting measures required to strengthen the healthcare system. A special focus of the expert discussion was on the role of the Bundeswehr medical service and the challenges it would face in the event of war.

In his role as an expert in social science disaster and security research, Prof. Martin Voss emphasized that in armed conflicts, attacks on the opposing country's healthcare system can take a variety of different forms. For example, an aggressor could try to undermine the performance of and confidence of the population in the health system of the country under attack. Possible methods for this could include cyber-attacks, sabotage, disruption of the flow of goods, attacks on critical infrastructure and the targeted influencing of social sentiment through misinformation. This represents a significant challenge for a country's ability to defend itself, as the reduction in the efficiency of the healthcare system and the associated disruption to basic medical care can break the will of the population under attack. In the context of hybrid warfare, this can even happen before the aggressor behind the attacks is identified.

To reduce the impact of this multitude of conceivable attacks on the functioning of the healthcare system, Prof. Martin Voss emphasized the need to preventively improve the population's ability to protect itself and seek outside help. This could enable people to better deal with bottlenecks in healthcare and become more resilient to the effects of hybrid warfare.

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