Colonel John S. Oh, MD, FACS, USA

Hero of Military Medicine Award

COL John Oh is a trauma critical care surgeon at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and chief of general surgery. COL Oh received his undergraduate degree at the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1993. After time on active duty, he attended the New York Medical College in Valhalla, New York on the Health Professions Scholarship Program and completed a residency in general surgery in 2003 at the William Beaumont Army Medical Center. After graduation, COL Oh served at the 121st General Hospital in Seoul, Korea, as well as Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center at Fort Hood, TX. He served in operational tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, earning the Soldiers Medal for heroism in 2006 after removing an unexploded rocket from a wounded soldier.

In 2010, COL Oh completed a surgical critical care fellowship at Brooke Army Medical Center and subsequently served as the trauma medical director at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center (LRMC) in Germany, the military’s sole level IV treatment facility which received nearly 100% of the evacuated combat casualties from Afghanistan and Iraq. During this time, Dr. Oh supervised the trauma research department and was active in clinical research in combat casualty care, traumatic brain injury, and prehospital injury care.

During his time at LRMC, COL Oh collaborated with German critical care physicians in order to maintain a military Extra-Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation Team. This team augmented the Air Force Critical Care Air Transport Teams and was capable of flying into combat theaters in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as throughout Europe and Africa to support patients with severe respiratory distress syndrome. These patients were transported on the aircraft on ECMO and returned to Germany for further management.

COL Oh became the Chief of General Surgery at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in 2014 and became the Director for the Division for Global Surgery at USUHS. During this time, the Division for Global Surgery performed a collaborative humanitarian surgical mission in the Philippines IN 2015 with the University of the Philippines College of Medicine and has developed into a global surgery resource for the United States Pacific Command and Southern Command in support of host nation capability building.