Medical Support for the International Space Station

Medical personnel from each International Space Station (ISS) partner work together, through the following groups, to support the medical needs of ISS astronauts during all phases of training and missions:

The Multilateral Medical Policy Board (MMPB)

The MMPB is made up of one physician from each of the international partners (IPs). It is the top-level medical policy board, which oversees the Multilateral Medical Operations Panel (MMOP) and the Multilateral Space Medicine Board (MSMB).

The Multilateral Space Medicine Board (MSMB)

The MSMB is one of the MMPB's primary working-level groups and is responsible for certifying that ISS crew meets the medical certification requirements. It also ensures that mission-assigned flight surgeons selected by the MMOP have completed the established credential standards. After reviewing and approving the MMOP's findings and recommendations, the MSMB forwards its recommendations to the MMPB.

The Multilateral Medical Operations Panel (MMOP)

The MMOP establishes common medical standards, preventive medicine guidelines, certification criteria, operational countermeasures, clinical care, medical hardware responsibilities, operational procedures, and environmental monitoring requirements. It also develops training certification guidelines for ISS flight surgeons and recommends mission-assigned flight surgeons to the MSMB. The MMOP receives and evaluates input from various working groups to solve key medical issues and presents its findings to both the MMPB and the MSMB.

Space Medicine Operations Team (SMOT)

The SMOT meets weekly via teleconference to discuss immediate and pertinent medical issues related to the ISS. Crew health, safety, well-being and performance, working conditions, ISS external and internal environment, and other medically relevant matters are discussed. Participation is limited to physicians from ISS partner agencies, essential support personnel, and experts invited for specific topics.

Space Medicine Management Team (SMMT)

The SMMT meets monthly via teleconference to identify the issues pertaining to the ISS crew health, safety, well-being and performance, working conditions, external and internal environment, and other medically relevant matters. Participation is limited to physicians from ISS partner agencies, essential support personnel, and experts invited for specific topics.