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Timely Field Medical Response Saves Lives

Immediate action is needed when you or your comrade are suddenly faced with an injury.  Instant reaction and confidence to treat the injury is needed in order to preserve life.  Capt Jason English, Canada CIOMR Operational Medicine Committee spoke to over 45 young international reserve officers at the Young Reserve Officers Workshop (YROW) at Madla Navy Camp, Norway during the Summer Congress of the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR).  He informed the YROWs about the Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) concept initially developed by Capt Frank Butler, United States Navy as it applies to medical care for leaders on the battlefield. 
The coordinated effort between YROW and CIOMR was a success.  “For the YROWs, many of them have a lot of experience in missions abroad like in Afghanistan or in Iraq, and realize it is very important know about tactical medical care. Because of this it was a great opportunity for the YROWs to hear Capt English’s lessons learned”, said Capt Philipp Schuett, Chairman of the YROW Committee.
 
This year CIOMR had the opportunity to present to the YROWs explaining that CIOMR is an independent organization focused upon medical issues where medical professionals are gathered together to exchange ideas and concepts. Many ideas shared are brought back by the reserve officers to their own home countries and civilian jobs adding value and advancement in medicine.  At the summer congress CIOMR also has a very important role during the CIOR military competition (MILCOMP) as they provide a Combat Casualty Care Competition for the MILCOMP competitors where medical lifesaving skills are tested.
 
For the first time the MILCOMP competitors benefited from a pre-session explaining the concepts of tactical medical care as it has been proven that soldiers trained and experienced in operational medicine gives the soldiers the skills to react and have better increased survivability when crisis hits.
 
“The importance of immediate buddy aid or self aid cannot be over emphasized.  Specifically the rapid control of hemorrhage at the point of injury improves survival rates immensely,” said Capt English. “If the causality can make it to the medical facility breathing and has a pulse because of the field care you provided, than the causality has a 98+% chance of surviving their wounds.”
 
Capt English continues to explain, “These young officers are the future leaders of their respective nation’s role in future conflicts. In this present day environment of asymmetrical warfare, for them to have an understanding of the concepts of TCCC, and how to integrate them into the battle plan, will improve their odds of a successful mission.”
 
During the presentation, medical acronyms were introduced to help the YROWs remember first hand response for operational medicine.   Also, still photos and videos were used to drive home the different advancements that are utilized with first responders to include lessons learned.  For example, it has been proven that Cervical Spine suspected injuries were only 1.4% historically in Vietnam meaning those precautions are mechanism specific. Today tourniquets are seen as an invaluable and a highly efficient life saving tool, so valuable that some countries issue every soldier a tourniquet for possible future usage and the medics carry multiple tourniquets.
 
The exchange of information between CIOMR and YROW was a success and both plan future presentations to continue the exchange of ideas.
 
“From a reserve perspective, I was very impressed to see approximately 25% of the young reserve officers had already deployed, and I was equally impressed that approximately 75% of the attendees had received prior medical training in their home nation it seems we are progressing towards being better prepared in the field operational environment,” said Capt English.
 
Photos: Capt Jörg Scnhurre (DE) and Henry Plimack (US).

 



© 2012 Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers