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    Care under fire

    Care under fire

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Youtoy Martin | Spc. Joshua Nwosu, a combat medic, with 10th Mountain Division, 2nd Battalion, 14th...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Youtoy Martin 

    U.S. Army Central   

    CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait — Soldiers with 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division and the Camp Buehring Troop Medical Clinic partnered with Soldiers from 1st Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division to create a realistic and challenging training exercise to give Army medical personnel sophisticated experience dealing with trauma injuries here, Nov. 16-20.

    Along with U.S. Army Central personnel, service members from the Navy, Air Force and Canadian military took part in the weeklong trauma lanes to better prepare their medical personnel for a mass casualty situation.

    “The scenarios [are based] around an attack on a forward operating base that is attacked by a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device, followed by small arms gunfire within the base itself.” Said Capt. Michael Chamberlin, who participated as a trainee and training observer-controller. Chamberlin, a native of El Paso, Texas, is a physician with 2nd Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Bde., 10th Mtn. Div.

    The medical personnel are called to the site and are faced with simulated human casualties and moulage dummies, a mannequin with visible injuries and simulated blood. The combat related injuries ranged from amputation to gunshot wounds and more, said Chamberlin.

    “Whenever you’re in a stressful environment, your fine motor skills are the first to go.” Said Chamberlin. “We are trying to stress them and get them to practice using the medical equipment in a stressful environment. They are getting hands on training, cutting clothes, opening up ACUs and equipment and fumbling with it now as opposed to doing it when they have a live patient bleeding out in front of them.”

    Among the simulated casualties, one of the more unique injuries was a Soldier who suffered a traumatic brain injury. For many of the teams going through the lane, it took some time before recognizing the Soldier playing the role was also a patient.

    “The TBI guy threw me off for a minute,” said Spc. Nicholas Graves, a senior line medic with 1st Battalion, 32nd Inf. Reg., 1st Bde., 10th Mtn. Div. “I thought he was just an infantryman asking if he could help. I gave him a tourniquet to assist me with my patient, then I looked up and he was putting it on himself. He had his weapon turned in the wrong direction when I asked him to pull security. That’s when I realized he was out of it. I’ve never dealt with a TBI where the guy was that out of it.”

    The medics work as a team to assess and evaluate casualties in a care under fire scenario before moving to a casualty collection point for tactical field care. The medical teams are able to conduct an in-depth medical intervention at the CCP before moving the patients to a role-one aid station, where doctors are able to provide mass casualty trauma care.

    “Communication is always the number one challenge, you have to be able to communicate with your team,” said Maj. Tina Osborne, a physician assistant attached to 115th Combat Support Hospital. “As a doctor, a medic, or PA, you should be running these kinds of drills all the time to improve communication between your team. The more times you run through these drills with your team, the more familiar they get with the course of treatment the doctor wants to take on a patient.”

    Throughout the course of the exercise, each medic is actively treating a patient, some with multiple patients. A provider acting as a training observer-controller is assigned to each patient, critiquing the medical teams and providing updates on the patient’s condition and treatment as the lane progresses.

    “It really helps prepare you for real situations,” said Graves. “This is one of the best training scenarios I’ve gone through. Normally it’s one evaluator [for the event], with this training you had an OC overseeing the patient right with you, you’re not having to wait for them to evaluate the whole team.”

    After stabilizing the patients, the team then calls a nine-line medical evacuation to transport the casualties to more definitive care to conclude the training.

    “I have been pleasantly surprised,” said Chamberlin. “What I have seen working with them and as an OC, it’s been overwhelmingly successful. I’m very proud of their actions and reactions to the very difficult situations we are putting them in. It increases my confidence in both my guys and some of the others around base in responding to these situation and doing things appropriately.”



    Date Taken: 11.24.2015
    Date Posted: 11.24.2015 15:40
    Story ID: 182767
    Location: CAMP ARIFJAN, KW 
    Hometown: EL PASO, TX, US
    Hometown: FORT DRUM, NY, US

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