CAMP CASEY, South Korea - Medics of Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 210th Field Artillery Brigade and flight medics of 2nd Aviation Regiment practice loading a patient on a hovering helicopter using a SKEDCO litter tag line, Oct 6, at Helipad-252 on Camp Casey. The tag line for the SKEDCO enables the ground providers to stabilize the patient while they are hoisted on to the helicopter. (Photo by Pfc. Kihyun Kwon)
CAMP CASEY, South Korea - In the Army, situations arise when medics need to promptly transport patients to places that safely offer the patient proper treatment.
In order to be prepared, Medics of Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 210th Field Artillery Brigade conducted Medical Evacuation training Oct 6, at Helipad-252 on Camp Casey.
Pilots and flight medics from 3rd General Support Aviation Battalion, 2nd Aviation Regiment visited Camp Casey to lead MEDEVAC training and integrate with ground medics of 210th FA Bde to practice transporting patients on a helicopter.
"The purpose of MEDEVAC training is to familiarize ground units with the operating procedures of the aviation unit," said Sgt. Iim Yang, a Reno, Nevada native and a Critical Care Flight Medic assigned to 3-2 GSAB, 2nd Infantry Division/ROK-US Combined Division. "This allows soldiers to integrate ground operations and aerial operations."
The training was separated into two parts: transporting a patient into a helicopter while on ground and while hovering. In both parts, medics began the exercise by practicing with an empty litter and progressed to carrying one with sand bags on it, and validated their skills by carrying a real person on the litter.
As with any kind of training conducted for the first time, there were some challenges. Although ground medics were not familiar with the equipment used by flight medics, it was an opportunity for them to learn the different procedures and measures to transport a casualty.
"The flight medics gave us a lecture about all of the equipment and the helicopter during the training, and they wanted to teach us as much as possible," said Pfc. Yuseop Shin, a Lawrence, Kansas native and a Health Care Specialist assigned to HHB, 210th FA Bde, 2ID. "Due to their great support, we could overcome the unfamiliarity by taking notes and paying attention to the lecture," he added.
Throughout the MEDEVAC training, medics of HHB, 210th FA Bde successfully became able to load the patient on and off the helicopter in a short amount of time.
"The medical field is constantly changing in either the military or civilian sector, so staying up to date on medical procedures, skills, and lessons learned is really needed for all of us", said Yang.
"I was amazed that the training has actually happened because I know that this training is very costly," said Shin. "The Army was supportive enough to link us up with the flight crew and provide us the opportunity to fully experience the MEDEVAC in real life rather than in books."
"Moreover, it was very motivating to meet the flight medics," said Shin. "We now feel more equipped as medics by cooperating with them for the first time."