The NATO Centre of Excellence for Military Medicine (MILMED COE) is an international military organisation with the core task to facilitate interoperability between the military medical services in NATO. It was accredited by NATO on 12 October 2009 and is located in Budapest, Hungary.

MILMED COE currently has 11 member nations. Besides Hungary as the founding Framework Nation, 10 countries have joined the Centre so far as Sponsoring Nations: Kingdom of Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, United Kingdom of Great Britain and the United States of America. The Centre is composed of 4 medical branches: Deployment Health Surveillance Capability (DHSC) – a satellite branch located in Munich, Germany; Interoperability, Lessons Learned and Training.


Our soldiers work in alliance. They operate together with their comrades from different nations in NATO’s missions. They fight and might get wounded. Then the first dressing might be applied by a soldier from another nation. Just as our fighting troops, military medical professionals work together in the field and at home. They provide the highest quality of care within and between multinational medical units. This is where the NATO Centre of Excellence for Military Medicine (MILMED COE) comes into play. Nations come from different backgrounds and with different traditions and procedures. We assist standardization, design courses and trainings for medical professionals and also, we support health surveillance and identify best practices and lessons. We provide tools that enable allies to achieve the high expectations towards military medicine in multinational theaters.

The global threat of terrorism, the spread of weapons of mass destruction and regional armed conflicts represent the main source of tension and security challenges in today's world. This changing international security environment has accelerated NATO's need for adaptation to the new global security threats. The transformation process is being implemented through improving existing and developing new capabilities in specific areas, such as for instance defence against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) attacks or improving interoperability of deployed forces. These efforts are undertaken via increased multinational cooperation. In the aftermath of 9/11 and the 2002 NATO Prague Summit, the Alliance has brought small, subject-specific, multinational and thus effective organisations, the so called Centres of Excellence (COEs), into existence to assist in its transformational process.

NATO Centres of Excellence

Centres of Excellence (COEs) are considered to be international military organizations that work alongside Allied Command Transformation (ACT) in Norfolk, Virginia, in the United States. Although not being part of the NATO command structure, they are part of a wider educational and training framework closely linked to NATO activities. Designed to complement the Alliance's current resources, COEs cover a wide variety of areas, with each one focusing on a specific field of expertise. They support standardization and concept development as well as to train and educate leaders and specialists from NATO member and partner countries.

The Alliance does not fund COEs. Instead, they receive national or multinational support by "Sponsoring Nations" and – related to specific projects - by "Contributing Nations" financing the operating cost of the institutions. 23 COEs have either received NATO accreditation, are in the process of receiving accreditation or are in the development stages (as of December 2014). The working language of COEs is English.

Source:, ACT Transnet

MILMED COE Vision and Mission



Further development of NATO sustainable medical support by innovation, experience and sharing best practices



NATO MILMED COE supports the NATO Command Structure, other NATO bodies, national medical services and civilian organizations with subject matter expertise. The main goal is to further develop and improve medical support to missions abroad.

Focus is in the following domains:

  • Individual and collective medical training (exercises)
  • Evaluation of medical units
  • Medical Lessons Learned and Medical Knowledge Management
  • Interoperability
  • Health surveillance in the deployed environment


For further information see the detailed description of the branches' activities.


Watch the MILMED COE video




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