About The Museum

NMHM Building

Our Mission:

To preserve and explore the impact of military medicine

Our Vision:

To preserve, inspire, and inform the history, research, and advancement of military and civilian medicine through world-class collections, digital technology, and public engagement


The National Museum of Health and Medicine was established during the Civil War as the Army Medical Museum, a center for the collection of specimens and artifacts for research related to trauma and pathology. The museum's mission to preserve and explore the impact of military medicine spans more than 150 years and includes each major U.S. armed conflict. However, military medicine does not exist in a vacuum, and it is the museum's vision to preserve, inspire, and inform the history, research, and advancement of military as well as civilian medicine through world-class collections, digital technology, and public engagement. Visit the museum to learn about topics ranging from combat casualty care and traumatic brain injury, to the history of vaccine development and techniques in forensic identification.

The museum's exhibits and programs provide forums for both informal and structured learning that connect the mission of the Department of Defense museum with the public. The museum is a division of the Defense Health Agency Research and Development Directorate.