Ground was broken Friday, Oct. 24 at the Rhine Ordnance Barracks, in Kaiserslautern, Germany as the Department of Defense prepares to replace the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center and the Ramstein Air Base Clinic. Starting in 2022, a new, world-class hospital will serve warfighters and their families stationed in Europe, and those deployed to the battlefields around the world.
Dr. Karen Guice, principal deputy assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, joined other Defense officials, members of the German government, and wounded warriors at the groundbreaking for the Rhine Ordnance Barracks Medical Center. The new facility will replace the 61-year-old Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Landstuhl, Germany, and the Ramstein Air Base Clinic operated by the 86th Medical Group, consolidating these facilities into one joint-service facility.
“This new hospital will continue to provide a place of healing for our warriors in battle, continuing 60 years of service and commitment into the future,” Guice said during the ceremony at the largest American hospital outside of the United States and the only American tertiary hospital in Europe. “It is both the legacy of Landstuhl and the promise of our new medical center that send an unmistakable message to our friends and to our adversaries that no one is left on the battlefield; that we will always care for and protect our service members and their families.”
Landstuhl has been a long-time fixture of the American military medical community in Europe, serving soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines for more than 60 years. With a staff of more than 3,300 service members and civilian employees, it provides primary care, tertiary care, hospitalization and treatment for more than 217,000 U.S. military personnel and their families within the European Command, as well as caring for members of coalition forces serving in Afghanistan, as well as Africa Command, Central Command and European Command.
The Rhine Ordnance Barracks Medical Center will be approximately 985,000 gross square feet, with nine operating rooms, 68 beds, and 120 exam rooms. The project includes a surge capacity that will allow it to rapidly expand to 93 beds. Additional project features include an administrative building, structured parking, a central utility plant, support infrastructure and roads, and an access control point. The design will also comply with stringent German environmental quality requirements.