36th MDG practices med-evac plan with HSC-25
By Senior Airman Angelique Smythe , 36th Wing Public Affairs
/ Published February 27, 2007
ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- Members of the 36th Medical Operations Squadron and Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron Two Five practiced patient transport during a medical evacuation exercise here recently.
"We wanted to do patient loading for readiness training," said Staff Sgt. Brandon Simmons, 36th Medical Operations Squadron. "Also, we wanted everyone to become more acquainted with HSC-25."
After a safety briefing, the 11 medics in training decided each person's role in the exercise, who would go into the helicopter first, who would be the patient, and how the helicopter would be loaded.
"Since we're first responders, it was kind of hard," said Sergeant Simmons. "We had to decide who would be the primary responders while we were working with the helicopter technicians. We had to take into account the mission and our goal."
The HSC-25 crew, who were part of the search and rescue team, were also still on the mission. If an emergency arose, training would have ceased and the Airmen would have been dropped off.
"I'd like to thank HSC-25 search and rescue, the crew chief, piolt and everyone over there because they were extremely important to our training," said Sergeant Simmons.
Before flying out, the crew placed their patient onto the litter. Instead of training with a dummy, the medics used an Airmen as a simulated patient.
"A dummy is more like dead weight and not proportionate to a human being on a patient litter," said Sergeant Simmons. "We loaded the patient into the helicopter and then, for safety reasons, took her off and buckled her into the seat."
However, they maintained contact with the litter the whole time throughout the helicopter ride.
"It (the exercise) was a lot different than what we thought it would be," said Sergeant Simmons. "We had to pay attention to the crew chief at all times for safety reasons. We had to approach the helicopter from the sides at the three and nine o'clock positions. And we had to have the litter at an angle inside the helicopter because it was too long."
This was the first time the group did the med-evac training.
"I asked them, 'besides the incentive ride, did you get anything out of it?'" said Sergeant Simmons. "I heard 'yes' from every single person. We learned how to approach the helicopter and what to do. We learned that instead of having the ambulance transport the patient to the helicopter, having a staged area (casualty collection point) would be a lot faster and a lot easier. Now they could land right next to us and we could pick up our most critical patient and put them in the helicopter."