News: Hands-on training keeps deployed medics current with clinical procedures
Story by Sgt. Tanjie Patterson
KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan - In Southern Afghanistan, the "Provider" medics stay busy running daily clinical operations and supporting tactical missions, yet they still make time to polish their occupational specialty skills.
“In the medical field things are constantly changing, and we have to stay up-to-date with the latest information and practices,” said Sgt. Castulo Vera, the clinic non-commissioned officer in charge for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3rd Sustainment Brigade.
On a weekly basis, the healthcare specialists conduct refresher training on critical medical procedures like physical exams, mass casualty operations and traumatic brain injuries.
“Lucky for us, we haven’t had to use our training on any real situations, but we need to be prepared for the worst,” said Vera, a native of Wilmington, N.C.
Vera joins 3rd Sustainment Brigade’s Physician Assistant Capt. Walter Mathis and Brigade Surgeon Capt. Daniel Conway in keeping their medical staff current in their profession.
Mathis spearheaded a suture training session, March 21, at Kandahar Airfield, inviting two Air Force medical technicians to the class that included sewing stitches into skin-like substances.
“I thought the training was very informative, and I learned a few new techniques,” said Senior Airman ReNeisha Fowler, a medical tech with the 375th Medical Group-Task Force Provider, who currently provides medical services at Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan. “The (Army) medics are very helpful; they not only do their job but they also know their job. I feel like I’m in good hands when working with them.”
Mathis said that the training was essential because his medical personnel are entrusted to provide critical life-saving support.
“My Soldiers are the ones who go out on the convoys,” said the Jacksonville, Fla., native. “So, I need to have confident medics that can perform emergency medical care if needed.”
Spc. Eric Richardson, a 3rd Sustainment Brigade medic and Mount Vernon, N.Y., native, said he appreciated the opportunity to hone his technical skills.
“I think the training we get is awesome,” he said. “I’m always looking to advance my medical education.”
Date Posted:03.23.2013 04:04
Location:KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, AF
Hometown:FORT STEWART, GA, US
Hometown:JACKSONVILLE, FL, US
Hometown:SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, IL, US
Hometown:WILMINGTON, NC, US