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Army Combat Medics Conduct Tactical Care Training in Iraq

Combat medics  assigned to Company C, 27th Brigade Support Battalion, conducted a combat lifesaver course July 4 through 8 for service members stationed at Contingency Operating Site Marez.

During the five-day medical refresher course, the service members trained on how to treat a casualty until professional medical help arrives.

"Two of the most important things that (service members) need to know are how to protect themselves while moving a casualty to safety and how to apply their (combat life support) skills to potentially save another person's life, and that is what we teach here," said Army Sgt. Brenda Goode, a combat medic assigned to Company C.

The medical lifesaving skills taught throughout the course are invaluable and perishable skills on the same level as most civilian emergency medical technicians, said Goode, currently on her second deployment to Iraq.

Goode and other 27th BSB combat medics trained U.S. Soldiers and Airmen on how to assess casualties, control bleeding, restore a blocked airway and prepare patients for medical evacuation, if needed.

The service members tested their abilities to use medical items found in the improved first-aid kits attached to their ballistic vests, such as the combat application tourniquet, which is used to control bleeding.

"The goal of this training is to make sure (the service members) understand the basics of tactical combat casualty care, which allows them to medically treat the patients as the first responders on the scene," said Army Staff Sgt. John Schmidt, squad leader for Medical Evacuation Platoon, Company C.

Schmidt, the senior instructor for the CLS course, ensured service members understood how to treat the three most serious conditions to prevent combat deaths on the battlefield; bleeding, lung collapse and airway blockage.

"It makes me feel good to be able to teach these guys and watch them grow," said Schmidt, currently on his fourth overseas tour. "By the time they leave this class they are trained, certified combat lifesavers, and you can't put a price on that."

Tech Sgt. Tesha Bailey, an Airman assigned to the Air Force Financial Management Detachment, attended CLS classes before and feels the course taught by the 27th BSB as one of the better refresher courses.

"After attending this class, I definitely feel that I can competently help someone in a life or death situation," she said.



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