Next Generation Combat Medic

Knowledge Weighs Nothing in the Rucksack

Submission Guidelines

NGCM’s mission is to promote excellence in operational medicine through the dissemination of evidence-based, peer-reviewed clinical information, original research, discussion of relevant and controversial professional issues, and adherence to the standards of journalistic integrity and excellence.

We accept manuscripts through e-mail or through social media with the understanding that they are original and have not been submitted elsewhere or are being considered by other publications.

We welcome submissions of evidence-based application papers and descriptions of best practices, original research, QA/QI reports, case studies, and other manuscripts on a variety of clinical and professional topics related to the practice of operational medicine. We also welcome submissions including photography and artwork relevant to the austere medical provider. Manuscripts will be peer-reviewed by the Editorial Board and, as necessary, outside reviewers. Acceptance or rejection will be based on the general rubric below. All submitted works will be published with the first author given authorship credit on the site. Additional authors may be listed after the conclusion of the manuscript.

Why should I write?

Since the inception of the U.S. Military, NCO’s have been considered the primary trainers of servicemembers. The very nature of practicing medicine doubles down on training by making effective communication a primary responsibility between medics, their patients, and their peers. The changing nature of both medicine and warfare requires modern medics and warfighters to learn faster and to a greater depth. While our modern operational environment may be unknown, unknowable, and constantly changing, there is much we can do to prepare ourselves and our peers. Writing is one of the first steps in that process.

“The only way to affect more patients than by your hands alone is through the hands of other medics.”

Check out: The Importance of Effective Writing in the NCO Corps – NCO Journal (2017)

General Rubric

Use the rubric below to guide your writing and reduce the editing time required to post!


Articles should provide comprehensive insight, understanding, and thought-provoking discussion of the topic. Use scenarios to provide problem-focused context. Ask Socratic-style questions before answering them in the body. Make oppositional statements and then seek to prove them wrong or add context. Present a focused and cohesive viewpoint that is substantiated by effective supporting evidence. Write to stimulate dialog and commentary.


Articles should place medical knowledge in the context of military care. There are many websites for pre-hospital providers. NGCM is the first to cater directly to the Combat Medic, which is to say those providers in the field, mostly military, who are delivering patient care outside of well-established healthcare facilities.

Discussions about case presentation and treatment should include potential mission factors. How does accomplishment of the mission affect your care? How will potential enemy contact alter your decision-making? How do you integrate your non-medically trained comrades into your medical care? How will the terrain or weather cooperate with your evacuation? What happens if evacuation is delayed past doctrinal planning timelines?


Write in a style that is appealing and appropriate for the intended audience, enlisted medical providers. Use a consistent conversational voice throughout. Articles should reflect your unique personality through expressive and carefully selected word choices that bring the topic to life.

Use of Graphics and Multimedia

Use high-quality graphics and multimedia in your article when appropriate to enhance understanding, readability, and visual appeal. Search government-produced media resources first as they are released into the public domain. Embed YouTube videos only if they are directly germane to the topic. Acknowledge all image and multimedia sources with captions or annotations.

Check out the following resources for photos and videos:

The U.S. Army Soldier’s Media Center on Flickr

DVIDS – Defense Visual Information Distribution Service


Ensure all images, media, and text created by others display appropriate copyright permissions are cited accurately. Source articles may be cited in the text or in a references section. In-text citations should include at least the title linked to the associated PubMed or journal page and the year of publication. NGCM encourages the use of APA citation style because it’s easy to use and many free online citation generators exist.

Example in-text citation

The Ketamine Effect on ICP in Traumatic Brain Injury. (2014)

“There is also evidence to support that ketamine does not increase ICP in severe TBI patients.”

Example reference citation

  1. Bowers KJ, McAllister KB, Ray M, et al. Ketamine as an adjunct to opioids for acute pain in the emergency department: a randomized controlled trialAcad Emerg Med. 2017;24(6):676-685.

Quality of Writing

Writing should be free of grammatical, spelling, and punctuation errors. The style of your writing should facilitate communication and learning. Make use of programs like Grammarly or Microsoft Word to check your spelling and grammar.

Example Outline

There are lots of ways to effectively organize an article. The following posts highlight two very different but effective organization styles:

Ketamine Toolkit: Questions & Answers for your Medical Director

High and Sick: Altitude Illness

Generally, you should try to include the following sections in your article:

  1. Introduction and a scenario to provide context
  2. Socratic-style questions which will be answered in the article
  3. An overview of relevant basic topics
  4. Presentation of the disease or injury
  5. Treatment based on evidence, mission factors, resources available
  6. Summary answering the questions asked at the beginning
  7. References and resources including links to blogs and videos

We are here to help!

We don’t want to discourage medics from taking their first leap into academic writing. We are willing to help guide your writing, suggest resources, and craft your article into something you will be proud of. Send us a message with your ideas and we can get you pointed in the right direction!

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