Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Robert D. Fass, PhD


Air Force fighter pilots face risks associated with neck and spine injuries sustained while operating fighter aircraft. Studies from the flying and medical communities indicate that muscle-strengthening prehabilitative care may decrease the risk of flying related injuries in high performance aircraft pilots. For this reason, the U.S. Air Force provided $24.9M to implement the Optimizing the Human Weapon System (OHWS) program. The program provides physical therapy and strength training to fighter pilots in participating units at twenty-one Air Force bases with the intent of reducing injury rates and time out of the cockpit. From a healthcare perspective there is interest in the effectiveness of the program in injury reduction. From a funding perspective there is interest in the potential for a positive net present value (NPV) of the OHWS investment. This research utilizes injury data obtained from the Force Risk Reduction (FR2) tool to analyze injury rates, injury types, physiological injury locations, as well as medical and non-medical injury costs to form an NPV estimate for the OHWS program.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number