FORT POLK, LA — Medics can mean the difference between life and death on the battlefield. That’s why training is important to successful battle survival.
The 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division held Brigade Combat Trauma 3 training for its medics May 13–17 at the Mission Training Center. BCT 3 training teaches medics to deal with point of injury wounds.
“We train the medics how to prevent the four treatable causes of death at point of injury, which are hemorrhage control, hypothermia, tension hemothorax and breathing. We have found that those are the stabilization type of injuries that the medics can treat, at point of injury, to get them to a tactical field care and on to a higher level care so they can get to a surgeon,” said Capt. Heather Atamian, officer in charge of the BCT 3 training team.
The training is not all classroom work. The BCT 3 brings the high pressure of combat to the training area.
“We try to make the training as realistic as possible,” said Staff Sgt. Noah Sidonio, instructor, BCT 3 training team. “The wound patterns that the Soldiers are seeing in the training lanes are as up-to-date as we can statistically make them. It doesn’t get any more real as far as that is concerned. We also try to add as much pyrotechnics, smoke, noise and exertion as we can to simulate combat.”
The training that the medics receive has more than just a hint of realism.
“In my opinion, this is the most realistic training that medics do outside of combat. Hands down, this was the best training we could get when it comes to reaching a casualty, treating them and getting them to a higher echelon of care,” said Sgt. Joshua James Price, Charlie Company, 94th Brigade Support Battalion, 10th Mountain Division.
“The training just works.”
When it comes to training, the 4th BCT sets high standards, according to Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Bush, senior trainer, BCT 3 training team.
“The efficacy of training for the medics truly happens from the brigade level down,” he said. “If the brigade supports the medical training, the effects of the training will increase drastically. The Patriot Brigade has been one of the best brigades in showing support for the medical training that I have seen in the 18 months that I have been an instructor for this course.”