Photo courtesy of the Prairie Township Fire Department
A resident from Doctors Hospital gets a look at what its like for EMS on the scene of an accident.
Prairie Township firefighters and Doctors Hospital joined together on Sept. 23 to give hospital residents a view of life from the firefighters and patients side of an accident.
Forty-five residents from Doctors Hospital participated in this training session, along with 20 township firefighters. The residents were placed in turnout gear and helmets and allowed to cut up cars, intubate mannequin patients through front windshields, and attempt other EMS functions in the environments the firefighters/paramedics routinely face. The residents took turns being patients.
“This enabled them to understand some of the situations we face with ‘packaging a patient for them before we start transport. We even allowed them to attempt IVs and intubation routines in a moving vehicle, Fire Chief Steve Feustel said.
Around 10 a.m. that morning, MedFlight landed and the doctors and residents were allowed to attempt various procedures while sitting in the helicopter.
Fire Capt. Rob Cloud and Dr. Rob Lowe worked on getting this program running for three months before putting it into action. This is the first time this training program has been performed.
“I wanted them to see what goes on in the field and how that influences what may have been done so far, what still needs to be done and those kinds of things and how time factors into that, Lowe said.
Two senior residents, Nick Vanmalderen and Charles Tran, both said it was a great experience. They said everything went well and they learned a lot.
“Under the pretense that it was an educational experience for us, it was actually really fun for us to do something that normally we wouldnt be doing, but hear about from time to time, Tran said.
Cloud felt the residents were mostly surprised by the weight of all of the fire ground equipment.
“I think they were extremely surprised with the fire ground operations. They were surprised with how exhausted they were. They didnt realize how intricate it is to use the heavy tools.
Vanmalderen said he struggled most with the Jaws of Life.It was very difficult to use the Jaws of Life and bend away the metal and doors and try to get the patient out of the car.
Despite the struggles with the heavy equipment, both sides came out respecting each other a little more.I know now what they have to go through and the difficulties they had bringing that patient to us, Tran said.
Cloud and Lowe both said this is a training program they would like to repeat for future residents.
“I was really proud of everybody. Everyone was really organized and everything went off without a hitch, Cloud said.