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Reserve and Guard build expeditionary medical skills during Joint Medic exercise

Sgt. 1st Class Dion Cortez, Company C, 2-149 Aviation Texas Army National Guard flight medic, guides Reserve Citizen Airmen medical technicians off-loading a simulated wounded patient by stretcher during Operation Joint Medic May 5, 2019 at Joint Base San Antonio-Camp Bullis, Texas.

Sgt. 1st Class Dion Cortez, Company C, 2-149 Aviation Texas Army National Guard flight medic, guides medical technicians off-loading a simulated wounded patient by stretcher during Operation Joint Medic at Joint Base San Antonio-Camp Bullis, Texas, May 5, 2019. The simulated wounded patient was loaded onto a Humvee for transportation to an expeditionary medical support facility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Carlos J. Trevino)

Reserve Citizen Airmen medical technicians and a Navy Reserve corpsman care for a simulated wounded patient during Operation Joint Medic May 5, 2019 at Joint Base San Antonio-Camp Bullis, Texas.

Air Force Reserve medical technicians and a Navy Reserve corpsman care for a simulated wounded patient during Operation Joint Medic May 5, 2019 at Joint Base San Antonio-Camp Bullis, Texas. The medics carried the patient by stretcher from a simulated firefight to a safer area to administer care until the patient could be evacuated by a Humvee and then onto a UH-60 Blackhawk from the Texas Army National Guard. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Carlos J. Trevino)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-CAMP BULLIS, Texas --

More than 70 military members, including Reserve Citizen Airmen, Army and Navy Reservists and Texas Army National Guardsmen combined to sharpen their expeditionary mass-casualty stabilization and aeromedical evacuation skills May 4-5.

Operation Joint Medic, provided comprehensive hands-on training on the capabilities of expeditionary medicine including point-of-injury/role 1 care, medical evacuation via rotary wing aircraft, expeditionary medical support/role 2 care, en-route patient staging and aeromedical evacuation according to Lt. Col. Luis Berrios, 433rd Aeromedical Staging Squadron chief nurse, 433rd Medical Group chief of education and training and officer in charge/lead planner for this exercise.

Participants included the 433rd Medical Group, 433rd Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, 301st Medical Squadron, Navy Expeditionary Medical Facility Dallas, Army 7454th Medical Backfill Battalion and the Texas Army National Guardsmen from Company C, 2-149 Aviation from Martindale Army AirField.

“The purpose of this exercise was to practice our expeditionary skills,” Berrios said. “It was also so we can collaborate with other agencies so that we know how to work with each other when we deploy. By putting everybody together we learn to communicate and how to improve our collaboration. It enhanced knowledge of joint-medical operations while increasing readiness posture and morale.”

Participants spent the first day learning about the scenario and mission objectives then met with their teammates and took a tour of the exercise area.

Meeting prior to the exercise and learning about her team-mates skill sets was important to Tech. Sgt. Alecia Lovci, 433rd Aeromedical Staging Squadron health services administrator.

“It’s important so that we can establish roles so that way we are not confused about who is in charge of what portion of the patients’ care,” she said.

Some participants, like Lt. j.g. Brittany Minor, Navy Expeditionary Medical Facility Dallas critical care nurse, looked forward to learning new skills.

“I have never trained at Camp Bullis,” Minor said. “This is more in-depth. We learned how the system would work if there was a mass casualty situation and what our roles would be and how we would take care of the patients.”

“Especially with everybody coming together as a team to get things taken care of,” Minor said. “Actually learning how to take care of a patient that is out on the field or a mass casualty situation.”

Berrios echoed Minor’s sentiments.

“It was an outstanding collaboration between the participants from 10 joint-service organizations that significantly increased readiness skills through the use of realistic, hands-on clinical scenarios using clinical practice guidelines,” he said.

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