• A 7th Iraqi Army Division medic escapes the heat of the classroom by standing in the doorway at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, travels to the IA compound twice a week to train the Iraqi medics, who are experienced in treating combat-related injuries, to be more proficient at treating patients in a clinical setting. Ladina is a native of Belleville, MI. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
 (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    A 7th Iraqi Army Division medic escapes the heat of the classroom by standing in the doorway at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist...

  • Medics with the 7th Iraqi Army Division, attend a class on clinical orthopedics, taught by Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, July 11. Ladina travels to the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base twice a week to train the Iraqi medics, who are experienced in treating combat-related injuries, to be more proficient at treating patients in a clinical setting. Ladina is a native of Belleville, MI. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    Medics with the 7th Iraqi Army Division, attend a class on clinical orthopedics, taught by Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, July 11. Ladina travels to the IA compound on...

  • With a “sprained ankle” properly treated, Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, teaches a class of 7th Iraqi Army Division medics about clinical orthopedics at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Ladina, a native of Belleville, MI, simulates this injury for each group of medics he trains to test their reaction time and their knowledge of the treatment of orthopedic injuries. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
 (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    With a “sprained ankle” properly treated, Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, teaches a class of 7th Iraqi Army Division medics about clinical orthopedics at the IA...

  • Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, teaches a class of 7th Iraqi Army Division medics about clinical orthopedics at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Ladina, a native of Belleville, MI, travels to the IA compound twice a week to train the Iraqi medics, who are experienced in treating combat-related injuries, to be more proficient at treating patients in a clinical setting. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
 (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, teaches a class of 7th Iraqi Army Division medics about clinical orthopedics at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Ladina, a...

  • Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th Iraqi Army Division medic, demonstrates how to properly treat a chest wound during a class at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, travels to the IA compound twice a week to train the Iraqi medics, who are experienced in treating combat-related injuries, to be more proficient at treating patients in a clinical setting. Ladina is a native of Belleville, MI. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
 (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th Iraqi Army Division medic, demonstrates how to properly treat a chest wound during a class at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James Ladina, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade...

  • Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th Iraqi Army Division medic, demonstrates how to properly treat a chest wound during a class at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, travels to the IA compound twice a week to train the Iraqi medics, who are experienced in treating combat-related injuries, to be more proficient at treating patients in a clinical setting. Ladina is a native of Belleville, MI. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
 (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th Iraqi Army Division medic, demonstrates how to properly treat a chest wound during a class at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support...

  • Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th Iraqi Army Division medic, demonstrates how to properly treat a chest wound to Dr. Ezzat Bekheet during a class at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James Ladina, background, a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, and Bekheet, a linguist and medical advisor, travel to the IA compound twice a week to train the Iraqi medics.  The IA medics are experienced in treating combat-related injuries, but are learning how to be more proficient at treating patients in a clinical setting. Ladina is a native of Belleville, MI. As one of the few units to have taken part in every major campaign of the U.S. military's operations in Iraq, the 2/82 has been tasked with strengthening the Iraqi Security Forces as they work to maintain a safe and secure environment for the Iraqi people as the 2/82 leads the transition of U.S. Forces out of Iraq.
 (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kissta M. Feldner, 2/82 PAO)

    IA medics improve clinical skills

    Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th Iraqi Army Division medic, demonstrates how to properly treat a chest wound to Dr. Ezzat Bekheet during a class at the IA compound on Al Asad Air Base, July 11. Private 1st Class James Ladina, background, a...

AL ASAD, Iraq - Clutching an ankle twice its normal size, Private 1st Class James Ladina writhed in pain on the white tile floor. An Iraqi medic donning a white lab coat rushed to his aid, quickly removing Ladina’s combat boot and performing a range of motion test. After assessing the damage, he applied a splint and a wrap, and recommended that Ladina take anti-inflammatory medication and apply ice to the area to decrease pain and swelling.

Known as “Tom Cruise” by the members of his class, Ladina uses this theatrical style of teaching to keep his class interested and on their toes. Originally from Belleville, MI, he is a medic with C Co., 407th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, and has been tasked with instructing Iraqi Army medics in the Anbar Province. He is currently working with three groups of medics, each of which he meets with twice a week.

Ladina was working with a group of about 25 medics at the 7th Iraqi Army Division compound on July 11, when he faked a fall at the beginning of the class, testing his students’ reaction time and knowledge of clinical orthopedics.

“I want them to make a split-second decision,” he said.

“I thought something was really wrong,” said Private 1st Class Waleed Raswal Ameed, a 7th IA medic. “I recommend him to be an actor.”

But this training isn’t just drama and acting. The IA medics, experienced in treating combat-related injuries, are learning the steps to treating patients in a clinical setting, because “they’re not always going to be treating traumatic injuries.”

During the training, Ladina covered different orthopedic injuries, from sprains to compound fractures. Although some of the Iraqis have very little formal education, they participated in the class and asked questions, some of which were answered by fellow classmates.

“The Iraqis have gone above and beyond my expectations,” Ladina said. “They show interest in class and they’re doing great.”

To complete the day’s lesson, Ameed demonstrated how to dress and treat a chest wound. With one of his comrades lying on the floor with a simulated through-and-through bullet wound to the chest, Ameed explained to the class and Ladina the proper way to check for a collapsed lung, release pressure to restore breathing, and stop the bleeding.

This “train the trainer” method demonstrates how well the medics understand what they’ve been taught and ensures that they are able to follow the steps of treatment correctly, from beginning to end. It also guarantees that they will be able to teach fellow medics these skills in the future, when U.S. troops are no longer here to advise them.

Some IA medics, like Ameed, are already going above and beyond to become experts in their field. Ameed said if he misses a lesson or is struggling to understand, he reviews with his peers or with the U.S. medics until he gets it.

“My ambition is to be a teacher to Iraqi soldiers,” he said. “I try to improve myself to impress my commander, and serve my country and the Iraqi Army.”
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Page last updated Mon July 18th, 2011 at 08:17