A new medical fellowship program established by the Department of Defense seeks to improve the survival chances of wounded warriors in combat zones. Created by Army Lt. Col. Robert Mabry, a doctor who served as an Army Special Forces combat medic, the Military Emergency Medical Services and Disaster Medicine Fellowship Program will train physicians in pre-hospital care, which is the time between a traumatic event and when treatment is received at a military medical center. 

According to the DOD, the program was created after Mabry and his team of researchers looked at combat causalities. The study found that 87.3 percent of the 4,596 battlefield fatalities analyzed occurred before the wounded soldiers reached a hospital. While more than 75 percent of those deaths were deemed non-survivable, 24.3 percent would have survived if they received critical care in time. 

The program's first two fellows are set to graduate this summer. Once they complete the fellowship, they'll be moving on to medical positions where they can use their training, such as division surgeons, brigade surgeons, Special Forces group surgeons or directors of trauma systems.

More than 18, 300 combat medics currently serve in the Army – the second-largest military special occupational specialty, according to Army Times.