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    International Special Training Centre offers elite NATO SOF combat medical course

    International Special Training Centre offers elite NATO SOF combat medical course

    Photo By Warrant Officer Patrik Orcutt | A Greek Special Operations Forces soldier prepares a simulated casualty to be raised...... read more read more



    Story by Spc. Patrik Orcutt 

    U.S. Special Operations Command Europe   

    STETTEN, Germany – The International Special Training Centre doesn’t do mass casualty exercises with a splash of fake blood here and a bit of pyrotechnics there. Instead they use actual amputees and professional makeup artists, and immerse students in the chaos of combat. This includes silicone used to create dislodged eyeballs and actual missing appendages that look like fresh wounds at the NATO Special Operations Combat Medic Course, replicating the sights and sounds of the battlefield.

    During the course students undergo a mentally challenging 21 weeks of classes and practical exercise, followed by a physically demanding 36 hour field training exercise to test the skills they have learned. Skills learned through hands-on stations, trauma lanes, and mass casualty scenarios at a final field training exercise, conducted here March 19-20.

    The course is designed to create a well-versed Special Operations medic while allowing the students to perform on a tactical level in realistic settings. The most recent course included students from 21 nations including Italy, Switzerland, Croatia, Germany, Greece, The Netherlands, Norway and America.

    “Its purpose is to make a special operations medic who is capable of being proficient in (Tactical Casualty Combat Care), then being able to hold onto a patient for 72 hours in a prolonged field care setting,” said a U.S. Special Forces Master Sgt. assigned to the ISTC. “They also learn clinical medical skills such as sick call and history taking, and basic veterinary medical skills. “Tactical Casualty Combat Care is the standard of care which teaches life-saving techniques in the pre-hospital battlefield setting.

    The intent of TCCC is to stop massive hemorrhage, maintain the airway, treat thoracic injuries and prevent hypothermia.”

    During the field training exercise portion of the course, the students arrive at a mass casualty site where they treat and stabilize the patients, then transport them to a field clinic where they provide treatment over the next 24 hours.

    This scenario is the culminating event for the class and tests the students on their overall knowledge of the course while sharpening their rescue techniques and prolonged field care skills.

    The realism of the event did not go unnoticed.

    “The training was very real, with the trauma patients having real amputations, it's very awesome and very impressive how they dress up the patients and conducted the training. It was very real,” said an NSCOM student with the Italian Special Forces.

    With nine member nations including Greece, the Netherlands, Norway, Belgium, Germany, Turkey, Romania, Italy and the United States acting as a lead nation, the International Special Training Center is a multinational training facility based on a memorandum of understanding. Its goal is to provide advanced and specialized training for Special Operation Forces at a tactical level.

    While many of these operators are learning how to become proficient combat medics, they are also building relationships with each other and special operations forces throughout NATO.

    “It can give you a web of knowledge and a network of people that you can talk to for shared experience while increasing your knowledge after the course, so it’s very awesome,” said an Italian Special Forces NSCOM student.

    Sharing years of experience and knowledge between the NATO partners is helpful for everyone involved.

    “These guys are our partners, our Allies — we want them to have the best standard of care possible. Being able to work with them and bounce ideas off them is always a good thing,” said the noncommissioned officer in charge of the course..

    With the field training exercise completed, these students will now move on to the final two weeks of the course where they will travel to Ireland to conduct hospital and ambulance base clinical rotations in conjunction with the University College of Cork. Upon completing the course, the students will return to their respective units as Combat Medics where they will put their skills to use and train others how to implement what they have learned.



    Date Taken: 05.01.2019
    Date Posted: 05.01.2019 09:32
    Story ID: 320238
    Location: STETTEN, BW, DE

    Web Views: 1,476
    Downloads: 2