Michele, The Real McCoy Contributor
Soldiers count on combat medics having the skills to negotiate a
battlefield, reaching them and patching them up or pulling them out of
harmís way. Their lives could depend on it.
An Air Force medic inspects the
identification bracelet of a "detainee" while another
medic documents the information to ensure the detainee receives
appropriate medical care.
(Photo by Tom Michele)
very familiar scenario is playing out at Fort McCoy as training began
Oct. 30 for the 68W Combat Medic Pre-deployment course.
first three-week class started Oct. 30 with 36 students, and was
followed with 42 students Nov. 4 and 31 students Nov. 12.
Army brought the course to Fort McCoy because," as Maj. Dan
Lechner said, "Fort McCoy has the Regional Training Site-Medical
facilities already here."
is an action officer with the 181st Infantry Brigade, the unit
conducting the mobilization training at the Wisconsin installation.
Hood, Texas, and Fort Lewis, Wash., also were in contention for the
Maj. Bruce Timmins, course program director, said "Since the
course was started in 2004, the mortality rate of combat Soldiers
dying from wounds suffered on the battlefield is 2 percent, and that
is an all-time low."
2 percent all-time figure is the biggest thing about this
course," Timmins said. "It is about how to treat a wounded
Soldier, stabilize that Soldier, stop the bleeding and then evacuate
said, "That 2 percent figure is a direct result of what is being
taught here so there are no surprises on the battlefield in-theater.
This course is the Army recognizing the importance of the course and
then funding the training. What the combat medic students do here is
exactly what they will do in-theater."
statistics cited on the private organization Global Security Web Site
state the World War II figure was 30 percent, Korean Conflict 24
percent and Vietnam Conflict 23 percent.
Army has conducted Pre-Deployment Training for combat medics (68W) at
Camp Bullis, Texas, since 2004. The Task Force Medical Trainers
mission is to train and certify combat medics and provide the most
advanced life saving skills prior to deployment to all combat
do training for the active component," Lechner said, "but it
is primarily for National Guard and Army Reserve Soldiers. We had many
Air Force students in our first iteration. We expect Navy students to
come. The Department of Defense is striving to perform its entire
basic medic training to one standard."
coming to this course must be combat medic 68 Whiskey Military
Occupational Specialty Qualified (MOSQ), according to Lechner.
An Air Force medic searches a
handcuffed "detainee" for weapons or suspicious
materials as the group takes the detainee to a medical facility
for appropriate medical care. (Photo
by Tom Michele)
when they arrive at Fort McCoy for mobilization, this course is the
validation allowing the Soldier to deploy in support of the Global War
said students come from all over the country and all are enlisted pay
grade E-8 or less.
course is a brush-up for some students who are gearing up for specific
tasks and scenarios they will encounter in-theater, specifically
Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom."
course teaches about the types of injuries predominating in those
theaters," Timmins said.
noted, "We take the information from lessons learned from theater
and apply that to what we are teaching our students."
have 16 instructors on the ground here," Timmins said. "All
are mobilized Reservists."
concluded by saying, "There is no fluff in this course. The
students do everything here they will do on the battlefield, like
doing needle sticks at night, without lights, under fire, in a moving
vehicle over rough roads and also in helicopters. They just do
stick is the insertion of a needle into a Soldierís vein, usually
the inside of the forearm.
intravenous (IV) salt water solution then is gravity fed into the
patient via the IV line to instantly provide needed nutrients to the
body that is undergoing stress and trauma.
McCoy RTS-Medís role in this new scenario is to provide three
buildings for the course, according to Gerry Meyer, McCoy RTS-Med
is a public affairs specialist for Eagle Systems and Services Inc.,
contractor for CONUS Support Base Services.)