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    Army enlisted medical Soldiers to receive extended training at civilian Trauma Centers

    Army Surgeon General poses with civilian trauma partners

    Photo By Stephanie Abdullah | The Army Surgeon General Lt. Gen. R. Scott Dingle poses with civilian partners from...... read more read more



    Story by Stephanie Abdullah 

    U.S. Army Medical Command

    Falls Church, Va. – Army enlisted medical personnel will now be assigned for 1-2 years at civilian trauma centers that partner with the U.S. Army to increase deployment preparedness. At Army Medicine’s Inaugural Military-Civilian Partnership (MCP) Summit held at the Defense Health Headquarters earlier this month, the Army Surgeon General explained to partners the importance of expanding training opportunities for enlisted personnel with the combat medic being the highest priority.

    “When Soldiers are injured on the battlefield, the number one word that is cried out is ‘medic’,” said Lt. Gen. R. Scott Dingle, U.S. Army Surgeon General and Commanding general, U.S. Army Medical Command. “The combat medic needs the clinical experience in trauma and critical care that that our partners are able to offer us to save lives.”

    “I am so grateful for our mil-civ partnerships because you’re training the world’s best medics who support the world’s most powerful Army. You’re giving our medical professionals; our combat medics, our Soldiers, our medical professionals, the opportunity to become experts and to sharpen the skills they need in combat.”

    The Army Surgeon General launched the AMEDD Medical Skills Sustainment Program (AMSSP) in 2019 to develop partnerships with civilian level 1 trauma centers to sustain and enhance the clinical proficiency for critical wartime specialties. There are two training initiatives under AMSSP, the AMEDD Military-Civilian Trauma Team Training (AMCT3) and the Strategic Medical Asset Readiness Training Program (SMART).

    “Presently, there are a total of 42 Army medical personnel embedded working full-time at civilian trauma centers across the U.S. Army. Personnel are assigned for 3 years as part of the AMCT3 program to include trauma surgeons cardiothoracic surgeons, neurosurgeons, anesthesiologists, emergency medicine physicians, as well as certified nurse anesthetists, critical care and emergency medicine nurses. These personnel are part of Army trauma teams based out of Fort Bragg, Fort Campbell, and Joint Base Lewis-McChord,” said Cynthia Barrigan, MEDCOM Director Military-Civilian Partnerships.

    To date, the Army’s enlisted medical Soldiers have been training on a rotational basis through the SMART program. Over 400 Soldiers including Combat Medics, Operating Room Technicians, and License Practical Nurses have participated in an intensive two week rotation which includes working in the pre-hospital settings, intensive care units, operating rooms, and emergency departments along with specialized medical simulation training. Nearly 400 Soldiers have been trained through SMART since its inception in 2019. The Army anticipates that more than 175 enlisted medical Soldiers will go through the SMART program next year as existing partners increase their capacity to train.

    “Starting in 2023, in addition to rotational training through the SMART program, combat medics will be incorporated into the AMCT3 program,” said Barrigan. “The goal is to provide a more immersive experience over a longer period for combat medics comparable to what is being offered to our Army officers. Both programs will continue to fully leverage the capabilities offered by civilian trauma centers to ensure the combat medic sustains and builds both the skills and hands-on experience to save lives on the battlefield, said Barrigan.

    “Moving from not only the rotational capability but to a longer embed opportunity is really going to allow medics to key in on the prolonged field care skills,” said Maj. Hillary Battles, a Critical care nurse (66S) who was among the original 10 Soldiers to participate in the AMEDD Medical Skills Sustainment program and now serves as the AMEDD Medical Skills Sustainment Program Project Officer at MEDCOM.

    “As we look at our changing operational environment, we’re looking more toward large scale combat operations,” Battles explained. “If we’re looking at who our next threats are, they are near peers and so we will lose the air superiority that we’ve had that have allowed us to have that golden hour where we’ve been able to move patients around and get them to the level of care that they need. We are going to be asking individuals like myself and really leaning heavily on our enlisted personnel to provide that prolonged field care.”

    “So, how do we get these young Soldiers the skills that they need? We have to get them clinically engaged. We need to get them in situations so that they can get their hands on patients. That’s the only way you gain both competence and confidence in the care that you provide. So as we look forward to what our future engagements will look like-everyone needs to be able to maintain the Soldier that has been injured for an extended period of time,” said Battles.

    Army Medicine’s civilian partners include Cooper University Hospital, Camden, New Jersey; Grady Memorial Hospital, Atlanta, Georgia; Harborview Medical Center, Seattle, Washington; Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Oregon; University of Chicago Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois; University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; and Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee.

    Trauma medical directors and support staff from the civilian partners attended the summit. The event was an opportunity for networking, mentoring, discussions on lessons learned and experiences in program development and implementation.

    Army Medicine has invited civilian trauma center partners to participate in an event scheduled for Spring 2023 which will showcase Brooke Army Medical Center, the Department of Defense’s only Level 1 Trauma Center, the Center for the Intrepid, and the Institute for Surgical Research to ensure partners have a better understanding of the Army Medicine mission and the impacts that their programs have on Army readiness.




    Date Taken: 12.01.2022
    Date Posted: 12.01.2022 12:10
    Story ID: 434287

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