'Red Dragons' open fully functional aid station
November 13, 2012
FORT HOOD, Texas -- "We needed an environment where we can maintain our medical personnel on current training, care of patients and break in new medics," Capt. David Marcoux said.
For more than a year, Marcoux, battalion physicians' assistant for 3rd Battalion "Red Dragons," 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, had thoughts and plans to fill a medical need in the garrison environment; start an aid station.
Marcoux's dedication and persistence paid off Nov. 6 when the Red Dragons opened a fully functional battalion aid station in their motor pool here.
For almost two months, the entire Red Dragons' medical staff worked tirelessly to convert a medium sized building into an aid station complete with reception area, exam rooms, offices, running water, a bathroom, classroom, and pharmacy, Marcoux added.
Adding the aid station not only provides benefits to medical staff but Red Dragon command teams and Soldiers as well.
"Soldiers will now have the benefits of reduced sick call times, less travel for appointments as they can be treated where they work and a quicker recovery allowing the Soldiers to return to help the force," Marcoux said.
"The chain of command will also benefit from (the aid station) as they can check on their Soldiers progress, keep accountability of personnel and ensure medical readiness is up to date as periodic health assessments can be done here," he said.
Additionally, medics can enhance their knowledge and capabilities to better perform their job here and during deployments.
"This station will provide my medics with more experience, which helps them become subject matter expert qualified," said Staff Sgt. Joe Evans, aid station noncommissioned officer in charge.
"Our medics have a purpose. They earn the trust of the Red Dragon Soldiers by being proficient in their craft … being technically sound," Evans said.
To ensure the medics generate sound care they should be proficient in Tactical Combat Casualty Care -- trauma training, Evans explained.
"The basis for a medical platoon its ability to perform trauma training to be utilized when we are deployed," he stated.
"Medics need to care for their own when deployed, this is a great opportunity to gain some field-like experience," Marcoux added. The tactical experience from the classes going to be taught here and working with patients plays into the technical side.
"TCCC starts with a technical side that comes with helping real patients," Evans added. "Without having live patients to do full work ups on and triage properly, training is limited."
Evans said having real patients and being able to conduct TCCC is what makes this aid station valuable. "As the aid station continues to progress and possibly expand, I would like to remind my medics to be resilient, don't slack on support even if things get tedious. To the leaders and Soldiers--this station will pay off for medical readiness, patient education and training for deployments."