By Story and photos by Pfc. Jessica LuhrsJune 19, 2010
Story and photos by Pfc. Jessica Luhrs
1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division Public Affairs
"You have been called to an accident, a building has collapsed, early reports say the building is on fire and 20 people are trapped inside, your mission is to confirm how many people there are, treat them appropriately and prepare them for evacuation."
These instructions were given to 19 Iraqi civilians, Army and police, training to be medics by 'Battle Boar' Soldiers in 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division out of Fort Stewart, Ga., just minutes before their final test, a trauma lane on Forward Operating Base Warrior, Kirkuk, Iraq, June 17.
Sergeant Gregory Dombroski, a 'Battle Boar' combat medic section sergeant with Headquarters and Headquarters Company explained they make the trauma lanes as realistic as possible, hoping it's the worst the Iraqi medics will ever have to see.
"We want them to the point to where if they come up on a victim they're not shocked," he explained.
The lane had 15 Soldiers playing the victims with injuries ranging from a simple bruise to burns over their body. Also, there were Soldiers whose roles were to be nuisances and cause stress to the medics in any way they could.
The five-week long training has set the standard for medical training across Kirkuk, according to Sgt. Dombroski.
Since 2003 Iraqi medics have been training on combat lifesaving, but they needed more realistic, scenario-driven training, Sgt. Dombroski said.
"These medics are usually first on scene to an emergency, they make the difference in life and death for victims of car accidents, attacks or natural occurrences. They need this advanced training so they are prepared," said Sgt. Dombroski.
The Iraqi medics attending the course agreed that this is exactly what is needed to improve their medical abilities.
First Lieutenant Muhammad Jaslam Ahmed, a member of the Iraqi Police Emergency Response Unit, said, he cannot wait for graduation so he can go back and teach more IP the advanced skills he learned. That train of thought was the vision of the 1/30th Inf., "Battle Boars," who designed the course.
"Our vision for this program is that we teach these classes on how to be a medic and they take what they learned back, to teach others," said Sgt. Dombroski.