Combat Hospital to premiere on Global and ABC in summer 2011

From a media release:


  • Powerful and Poignant Medical Drama Set to Begin Airing in Simulcast Summer 2011

Global Television announced today that its latest original drama series Combat Hospital has been picked up by ABC. The 13 episode series, the second Global series to be picked up by the US network, will air in simulcast with ABC this summer (airdates TBC).

Set in a hospital inspired by the Role 3 Multinational Medical Unit (MMU) at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan, Combat Hospital charts the frantic lives of the hospital’s resident doctors and nurses from Canada, America, the UK and other allied countries. This candid, entertaining and sometimes brutal series follows Canadian trauma surgeon Rebecca Kincaid as she experiences relentless life and death battles on the surgeon’s table that transcend politically-charged stereotypes and is confronted with making the tough decisions that come with the realities of frontline medicine

Combat Hospital is a joint production of Canada’s Sienna Films and the UK’s Artists Studio with Carrie Stein at 3 Arts Entertainment and Simon Vaughan at Lookout Point heading up international sales. Executive Producers are Jennifer Kawaja and Julia Sereny for Sienna Films (The Cry of the Owl—with BBC Films, MACT Productions, Diamonds—CBC/ABC, with Buffalo Gal Pictures, Alchemy Television and Philo Films, How She Move—Paramount Vantage/MTV Films/Mongrel Media), Gub Neal, Justin Thompson-Glover and Patrick Irwin for Artists Studio; Executive Producer/ Showrunner Dan Petrie Jr. will head up the writing room on the show originally created by Jinder Chalmers and Douglas Steinberg.


37 thoughts on “Combat Hospital to premiere on Global and ABC in summer 2011”

  1. I don’t watch medical shows but this is an excellent idea. A solid int’l cast and some compelling storylines and I think it has a chance here on ABC this summer.

  2. Jennifer Kawaja and Julia Sereny directed my son in How She Move, I look forward to this new show welcome back ladies

  3. As much as I want to watch this show, I’m so scared to. My husband served in that combat hospital in Kandahar for 7 months in 2009-2010. He doesn’t say that he has any PTSD, but I’m the one being woken up in the middle of the night to his screaming commands at me like he’s re-living his time there. Not much sets him off, but he was once set off by the Discovery Documentary “Combat School” and again I was awoken during the night with him having another nightmare-flashback.

    Being as he is, he’ll want to watch and as is posted to a military hospital right now, he’ll hear about this show. I will appreciate being able to be given the insight into what his daily life was like there while he was away. I know some of his stories, those that he’s told me, but I fear for the one I love that his nightmares will be relived once again.

    It will be interesting none the less – one way or another.

    1. Jennifer. I am unsure if you and your husband are Canadian but might I suggest that you approach your local Military Family Resource Centre (Canada) for some guidance re: your husbands PTSD. You can also call the Members Assistance Program (MAP) and they can help too. Be strong and try to get him some help; for the both of you. The first and hardest steps are acknowledging there is an issue and reaching out.

  4. Does this remind anyone else of M*A*S*H? As soon as i saw this commercial thats all I thought of. I am not sure how well people are going to take that. M*A*S*H was an amazing series 11 seasons. You will never be able to top them or even come close to the greatness that show was. My kids sit down and watch it on dvd on there own. Just be careful how close you come to that show. its a great concept but make it your own. Dont copy what they did.

  5. I will boycott ABC while this show is on the air. Who will be making money off of this war show? M*A*S*H* was during the Korean War. It had been over for how many years before a show was made about it. Men and women were not still in harms way while we watched that show. Think again ABC. Wait until our troops are home before you have anything to do with this show.

  6. As a member on Roto 7 in Afghanistan with the French “22 Vandoo”, while I was on foot patrol we always had a medic with us but he did not have to use his skills, however I know that some other medics were not so lucky! I hope this TV show represent what really happened over there from start to finish! For example like the Band of Brothers and the Pacific series. I hope reflects day-to-day life of medics in field and KAF, as well as touching life of other personel.

  7. I really hope this is not Grey’s Anatomy in Afghanistan. Google The Fifth Estate ” Life and death in Kandahar” Its The Role 3 hospital in 2008.

  8. I think it’s horrible that you’re doing a serious about this. The war’s not even over and you’re show is going to be ridiculous. As being a member that was actually deployed at the Role III hospital in Afghanistan, it terribly upsets me. I watched the pilot and it was completely upsetting. The only people that will enjoy this are people that wished they were apart of this war.

  9. It upseats me that there is already a show in the making about an actual hospital in the current war. As being a member that was previously deployed there, I feel that it is completely wrong to do so. The war is not even over and the pilot put a bitter taste in my mouth. I don’t feel like the actual experiecne and the goal of the hospital are going to be portrayed. It’s just going to be another medical drama, the only difference is, it will be taking place in Afghanistan. A place and subject that is real and shouldn’t be shared for entertainment.

  10. i grew up in the military because i was born in a military hospital and i have cerebral palsy so i know the culture….this feels like a modern version of china beach back in the 80s…but the one thing that made it good was the music….in this one i hope they don’t stay on the soap box for long and be to politically preachy

  11. During WWII, when Great Britain and her colonies were the only countries opposing Nazi Germany, a movie was made to convince the US to join the good fight. The movie was “49th Parallel”. It was to tell the American public that this was no joke. That their liberty was at stake. All Americans should see it at least once. I see no difference between that and this series. Although I sense that Canadians are more concerned about this war and have fought it well, I see my countrymen forgetting… what with the high price of gas and all. No, I thnk this is the right time to show the series. People don’t die from a bullet within seconds. Most often, they suffer for hours.

  12. 49th Parallel was a cool movie … Huterites help defeat the NAZIs !! I wonder if they got booze as a reward?

  13. There is nothing glamorous about a war, and this one is still raging on. My son just returned from Afghanistan, what he experienced was nothing short of hell. This is not a movie, this is a series and it looks very much like a modern day “MASH”. At least then, they had the courtesy to wait until that war was over.

    1. Now that the first show of the series has aired I find it hard to compare MASH and Combat Hospital. MASH featured the Korean conflict, but was in reality an anti Viet Nam statement, which was very much going on during the airing ot the series. I feel, having seen one show, that this series will show us what it is like to be in a frontline hospital, from many points of view.

  14. How crass. Do you realize how mush this is going to hit to close to home for way to many people? My brother-in-law is still very traumatized by the whole Kandahar experience. This is not something that should be glorified, or relived. You have lost a great deal of viewers by running this show, and for those of you who are going to be watching maybe you should join, the army, navy or air force and get a real good feel for what o0ur soldiers have been through!!

  15. I have never previously seen this show and I just saw the commercial for it on TV. As a soldier who has served in Kandahar for nearly a year and who has witnessed the tragedy that is war over there, I think this show is a terrible idea. The simple experience of seeing this preview had caused my heart to race and become gripped with the same daily terror that I remember.

    How dare you make service in Afghanistan “entertainment”. How could you possibly think to make money off of the horrors that have changed the lives of countless Canadian soldiers?

    You should be ashamed of yourselves.

  16. The mission in Afghanistan has been a very difficult experience for our Canadian troops, and for their families. It has been quite some time since Canada was active in a combat role, and things have changed a lot over the years from the type of fighting, to the advancements in medical care.

    The timing may be a little pre-mature for a show on Afghanistan, however it is important for Canadians to understand what actually happened over there. The choice to watch this show is up to the individual.

    Medical assistance is widely available for members who have ongoing issues from deploying to Afghanistan. Should this tv show trigger such strong emotions, then perhaps it would be beneficial to seek medical treatment.

    Hopefully this program will acurately shed some light on the positive impact Canada has made in Afghanistan, as well as many other NATO countries. Regardless, this is not a documentary, and should not be viewed as such.

  17. I am currently deployed to this hospital and believe this can go one of two ways. They can make a quality show that highlights the difficult decisions that are made and try to realistically portray the efforts and daily lives of those involved, from the combat medic in the field to the trauma teams at the hospital, or they can make a ridiculous hybrid of MASH and Grey’s Anatomy. I guess we’ll see what happens.

  18. Jinder Chalmers is actually the creator of the show and the only one on this production who has actually been to afghanistan for research. Her intent was to show North american another perspective of the war and the afghan people.

    I look forward to watching combat hospital.

    I hope it gets picked up for a second season,

  19. I love medical shows and I think this one is going to be a rocker and a total block buster from day one on. Can’t wait to see it and hope it has a two hour starter.

  20. I had the chance to be present at a conference given by the chief medical officier of this role 3 hospital some time ago. His account of the daily operations of this hospital was both fascinating and terrifying all at once. As a member of the canadian military, i only hope that this show will live up to the reality and help more people understand what our troops go through over there. By all means, this should’nt be anything like MASH, it is way too soon to make jokes about Kandahar, b ut it should make an excellent drama series.

  21. I have deployed as a member of the Role 3 three times. I am looking forward to seeing if they get it right. We have accomplished some amazing things in that hospital, worked with truly wonderful medical personnel from many other countries and learned how much we can do when we need to. If the show manages to show even a small portion of those achievements then I will be content.

  22. This sounds like a good idea, i’m not much into hospital shows, but i watch MASH all the time on the History channel and this seams like a mash style show but with less comedy but it still looks good.

  23. From the commercials that I have seen on television, I will not be watching this program. “It’s Major or Doctor, not Miss and he will be released when I say so.” That is the most irritating speech on television since Parenthood, “What do you want 1/2 a baby?” Needless to say, I do not watch that show. Being a veteran, NO military doctor would EVER say that. EVER. So I will not watch this program.

  24. My son is a corpsman who has served in at Role III. I can’t imagine this being realistic. I have heard only a few stories and it was enough to keep me awake at night. It’s heart breaking that so many are dying every day and no one honors the men and women or their families. Instead of making a few bucks off of their stories and deaths maybe ABC could do actual documentaries and bring to this country what is really going on over there and not just the sugar coated news.

  25. I think we have to wait and see what this show brings – It appears too many out there maybe getting worked up about nothing – I also think it is important to view the typing of treatment our Military can receive if wounded and to honour them – so relax, as long as it is fairly close to reality and I think it will considereing their are Cdns involved in the production.

  26. As someone that lived through role 3 and saw the childern hurt the enemy beside me and the ANA soldiers i hope you have talked to some of us that lived through the experience over their , the true heros are the field medics who as far as im concerned should all get the medal of bravery for what they do.

    a medal of sacrifice reciept and former soldier

  27. I have been deployed twice to KAF role 3 hospital in 2008 and 2010. I will watch simply to see how far they are off the mark or how close they came to the bulls eye. Judging from the trailer I saw on TV I think they are going to miss the mark. Come on, shooting a snake in an OR? There is no way on this green earth that someone would be allowed to whip out his pistol and pop off a round in an OR setting without being charged. And that speech from Maj, not miss is a tad of a joke. Anyway, I am curious so I will watch then determine how much of a fan I will or will not be

  28. One of the things that Diane and Anthony point out in the latest podcast regarding this show is how much this show is being compared (fairly or un-) to M*A*S*H, almost as if to say, “Well, the combat medical show has been done already, so why do it again?” or “It probably won’t be as good as M*A*S*H, so why bother?”

    But everyone seems to have forgotten about China Beach, which seems to be a closer model for what Combat Hospital is trying to be than M*A*S*H is. It could well be that when CB started, people were making all the same arguments that they are making about Combat Hospital, but damn, if China Beach wasn’t really anything like M*A*S*H, and wasn’t a great show in its own right.

    I’m not expecting much from Combat Hospital, but then, I didn’t expect much from China Beach, and hadn’t even started watching it until its last season. I’m willing to give this show the benefit of the doubt.

  29. Jerry, some of the comparisons have even been favourable – and they’re being made by critics who have seen the pilot – but they don’t seem particularly apt based on the marketing, and set a too-high bar given the critical acclaim and success of MASH. I’m critical of the marketing for not giving a positive impression of the show, but I will watch it and judge the show for itself, too. (I didn’t watch China Beach and suspect it didn’t enter the cultural consciousness enough for critics to call back to it this much later.)

  30. Just finish watching the show. I love it and can’t wait for the next episode

  31. The idea that what we as soldiers lived in Afghanistan, is now an entertainment TV series is upsetting. Peoples family member’s have died in that VERY real replica of role III, isn’t it a little early to make money and ratings off a soldiers sacrifice and a family’s pain. Sure lets bring to life the amazing efforts the doctors over there make, but do it in a tasteful documentary. My boyfriend was horrified I wanted to watch the show, he wakes me from my dreams when I scream and watches me cry over the fallen years after returning from Afghanistan.
    Those who paid the ultimate sacrifice do not deserve to be used this way. If you want to “see” what KAF is like, put on the uniform, take the oath and give yourself to your country like we have done. If you wish to “see”the inside of role III, get blown to bits by an IED. If you want to watch a medical drama, turn to Greys anatomy.
    To the boots still on the ground,may you be supported and respected in the appropriate way.

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