JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas –
Physicians from the Emergency Medicine Residency programs at Brooke Army Medical Center at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston and Naval Medical Center Portsmouth participated in the 2018 Joint Emergency Medical Exercise, or JEMX, in mid-June.
The six-day exercise included simulated battlefield scenarios, didactics and a procedure lab.
“Our emergency medicine residency program is outstanding and the doctors we produce are excellent in the emergency department of a hospital, but medicine in deployed locations and in combat is very different,” said Army Maj. (Dr.) John Knight, a former Special Forces medic. “We needed to give them an appreciation for what they would encounter in a war zone.”
The simulation exercises during JEMX teach life-saving medical intervention in an environment with limited resources.
Physicians also joined the 19th U.S. Army Special Forces unit in the procedures lab working with trauma surgeons, anesthesia and ultrasound experts, and intensivists at the Bulverde Spring Branch Fire and EMS Center for Emergency Health Sciences using cadavers to learn techniques not taught in other training.
“Initially, the Special Forces were a little hesitant about training with a bunch of doctors, but they saw an advantage to the alliance and agreed to conduct joint training exercises with the new Emergency Medicine doctors.” Said physician’s assistant retired Army Maj. Paul Allen, a former medic.
In another exercise, physicians experienced a simulated passenger compartment of a high-fidelity UH-60 Blackhawk mockup located in the U.S. Army Medical Department Center and School’s Critical Care Flight Paramedic Program. The simulation included blackout conditions with loud noise, cramped space and casualty mannequins.
Doctors who have experience in combat medicine gave didactic presentations on prolonged field care, field anesthesia and pain control and systems of trauma care in deployed locations.
The group also participated in simulated raids at JBSA-Camp Bullis, to practice receiving, planning, rehearsing, conducting and recovering casualties.