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September 14, 2012


Medical Simulation Training Center Fort McCoy

(Editor’s note: “SPOTLIGHT” is a continuing series about tenant activities and missions at Fort McCoy.)

What is it?
Medical Simulation Training Center (MSTC) Fort McCoy provides sustainment training to combat medics in pre-hospital trauma-management skills for the battlefield. The organization primarily trains Soldiers in the 68W (health care specialist) military occupational specialty (MOS). Additionally, the MSTC offers the Combat Lifesavers (CLS) course to non-medical military personnel. MSTC Fort McCoy uses live-action and realistic simulations to augment its medical-training courses.
PHOTO: Soldiers train in the military operations in urban terrain trauma lane at Medical Simulation Training Center Fort McCoy. Photo by Geneve N. Mankel
Soldiers from the 377th Support Maintenance Company of Manitowoc, Wis., train in the military operations in urban terrain trauma lane at Medical Simulation Training Center Fort McCoy under the watchful eye of instructors. The Soldiers had to recover simulated casualties, administer first aid, and evacuate the casualty while under simulated combat stressors, such as weapons and mortar fire and smoke. The Soldiers were undergoing the validation portion of the Combat Lifesavers course.
(Photo by Geneve N.. Mankel)

Personnel with a 68W MOS are qualified as civilian emergency medical technicians (EMT) and are required to complete training annually to remain certified. The required training is outlined in the Medical Education and Demonstration of Individual Competence Training and Testing table (TC 8-800), which includes seven training tables and one validation table. MSTC Fort McCoy provides training for all eight tables. Training includes trauma assessment and treatment, triage evacuation, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and more.

The CLS course trains non-medical personnel in basic battlefield medical knowledge and treatment. The students learn skills needed to provide immediate care to a casualty, such as stopping bleeding, treating for shock and performing needle chest decompression for tension pneumothorax.

MSTC Fort McCoy courses include classroom and realistic hands-on training. The hands-on training includes participating in the military operations in urban terrain (MOUT) trauma lane and specific-action training rooms. Both training areas include simulation equipment. Lifelike mannequins (high-fidelity human patient simulators) can breathe and bleed, allow personnel to take and record vital signs — pulse, respirations, blood pressure — and react to treatment. Audio systems can play music, weapons-fire sounds and human voices. Fog machines replicate smoke and dust. Several areas are staged as Middle Eastern villages.

The organization trains Soldiers from all Army components — Reserve, National Guard, active duty — and also can train personnel from other military branches and Department of Defense agencies.

MSTC Fort McCoy also offers the EMT Basic Refresher, improved first-aid kit familiarization, Basic Life Support (CPR), and International Trauma Life Support.

MSTC Fort McCoy is one of 18 Army MSTCs and one of two U.S. Army Reserve MSTCs.

The oversight of MSTC Fort McCoy is shared by the Army Medical Department; Army Reserve Medical Command; Medical Readiness Training Command; Program Executive Office for Simulation, Training and Instrumentation (PEO-STRI); and the Fort McCoy Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security.

What have they done?
MSTC Fort McCoy was established in 2009. Since then, it has provided training for more than 13,000 personnel.

In 2011 the organization was chosen as the host site for the Armywide PEO-STRI MSTC conference. It was selected because it is considered to be a “Best Practice” organization.

The MSTC organization continually is improving its capabilities and course offerings. For example, it has expanded its MOUT trauma lane to simulate an entire village; most MSTCs only have one MOUT building.

What do they have planned?
The MOUT trauma lane will be upgraded with improvements in the next fiscal year. Air compressor lines and electricity will be added to the lane to allow for the use of the high-fidelity human patient simulators in that area. The upcoming new version of the human patient simulators will not need to be tethered and will be more mobile than current versions.

Why are they important?
Thousands of medics in the Army need training to remain proficient in medical tasks and skills. MSTC Fort McCoy is one of the few facilities that can provide medic-sustainment training through simulation.
State-of-the-art facilities and medical simulation training aids add realism to training and help prepare medical personnel for combat situations.
The training medics receive translates into lives saved on the battlefield.

For more information about MSTC Fort McCoy, call 608-388-1136.

Personnel with a Common Access Card or Army Knowledge Online login can visit the website https://extranet.mccoy.army.mil/AKO/Training/MSTC/.

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