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Shuttle-Mir Stories - Barratt on Medical Differences

During Shuttle-Mir, Dr. Michael Barratt was one of the "flight docs" for U.S. Mir astronaut Norman Thagard.

In his Oral History, Dr. Barratt talks about differences between the U.S. and Russian ways of medicine. He says, "We often had disagreements about whose standards should be applied to, for instance, a U.S. astronaut training in the Russian program. Each program had a very large experience base, but a very different philosophy. In particular the Russian philosophy was more towards functional loading: put a crew member under a certain situation of low pressure, high temperature, sleep deprivation, centrifuge training, whatever, and see how they respond physiologically. Our philosophy was more to look for health factors, not necessarily fitness, but health factors, and we would differ quite a bit on what test result would declare a person healthy or certified for training or space flight..."

Related Links:
Michael Barratt Oral History (PDF)
Flight Docs

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