Story and Photo By Chuck Yang, Kimbrough Ambulatory Care Center Public Affairs
Army combat medics are trained to provide medical treatment to wounded Soldiers on the battlefield. They are vital assets in the functionality of the combat team when going on any hazardous mission.
However, medics aren’t always available in some situations to provide first aid and trauma care to wounded Soldiers.
In response, Kimbrough Ambulatory Care Center provides a Combat Lifesaver Course to Soldiers.
“Normally, there’s only one medic per platoon, which can stretch the combat casualty care out on the battlefield,” said Staff Sgt. Cherod Jones, NCOIC, Schools and Resuscitative Medicine at Kimbrough and the primary Combat Lifesaver Course instructor at Fort Meade.
The combat lifesaver is a non-medical Soldier trained to provide lifesaving measures beyond the level of self-aid or buddy-aid.
“This course provides training for non-medical Soldiers to deliver lifesaving measures to wounded Soldiers,” Jones said. “This class gives students some advance skills so they can provide treatment on the ground.
“However, we [medics] provide major combat-casualty care.”
The CLS course, initially a five-day course, was consolidated to three days at Fort Meade in response to the feedback, After-Action Reviews and lessons learned from the Soldiers.
“The shortening of the course improved the learning curve and helped students stay actively engaged,” Jones said. “There’s less time wasted, and this enabled us to optimize the training time.”
A veteran instructor, Jones provided CLS training Sept. 20-22 to 26 Fort Meade Soldiers.
“Soldiers respond well to this training and often I have more students requesting seats than we have available,” he said. “It’s a great success.”
A properly trained combat lifesaver is capable of stabilizing many types of casualties and can slow the deterioration of a wounded Soldier’s condition until medical personnel arrive.
Furthermore, in a non-hostile environment, the CLS course mimics a civilian first-responder course.
“Anything happens out on the range, motor pool or training sites,” Jones said. “These Soldiers are able to treat and provide initial care before the EMS team arrives. The CLS course helps out everyone tremendously.”
Speaking on the force protection aspect of the CLS, Jones said: “As far as the big picture, it’s a force multiplier as we are saving lives out on the battlefield.”
The three-day CLS course is offered monthly. Class size varies from 15 to 25 students per class.
For enrollment information, contact Staff Sgt. Jones, at the Plans, Training, Mobilization, Security and Education office at Kimbrough at firstname.lastname@example.org.