Back to Top Skip to main content

METC combat medic training unveils new EMT sim labs

A team of combat medic trainees attend to a "patient" in the EMT warehouse lab.  Students engage in various scenarios in the newly designed EMT simulation labs that resemble real environments that expose students to lifelike patient encounters. (U.S. Army photo by Lisa Braun) A team of combat medic trainees attend to a "patient" in the EMT warehouse lab. Students engage in various scenarios in the newly designed EMT simulation labs that resemble real environments that expose students to lifelike patient encounters. (U.S. Army photo by Lisa Braun)

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

Emergency medical technician training is an integral part of the Department of Combat Medic Training (DCMT) program at the Medical Education and Training Campus (METC). Located on Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, DCMT trains its students to effectively treat pre-hospital patients during emergency and non-emergency conditions in a variety of operational and clinical environments.

Students spend the first seven weeks in the 16-week program learning basic EMT skills and must pass the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians exam in order to move on to the next phase in the program.

Normally, students enrolled in an EMT program will ride along in an ambulance as well as conduct clinical rotations as part of their training. Because of the large number of students that DCMT trains – between 300 and 400 per class - it is not feasible to deliver this type of experience. Instead, training consisted of classroom lecture followed by simulated patient interactions - hands-on scenarios using partial manikins or classmates as “patients”, usually positioned on the floor or tables in an otherwise uninspiring lab space.

“The training labs were beginning to run their course,” stated Chris Kwader, DCMT simulation supervisor. “They were becoming boring and stale, and didn’t provide students with any sort of realistic patient encounter.”

EMT simulation staff Sara Miller, Mario Ramon and Jeffrey Schuld realized this and took matters into their own hands.

“Through the creativity of the DCMT EMT simulation staff, five different lab settings were designed to not only increase the students’ situational awareness, but also to expose students to real world patient encounters while in the learning environment,” Kwader explained.

Miller, an EMT instructor and supervisor of two of the sim labs, said that because her labs were the first to be finished, there was a brief overlap in the beginning with some students having used both the old and new labs. “The students like the interaction better in the new labs,” she stated. “The settings make it more realistic for them which they like because they feel like they’re interacting more with the patient.” 

The “patients” are hi-fidelity Human Patient Simulators (HPS), or manikins, which are placed throughout the labs in five separate simulation rooms. Each lab room is constructed to resemble a different environment, complete with props and settings designed to give the space a realistic feel. The environments include a business office, a park and bodega, a warehouse, a residence, and a hospital emergency room. The “patient” might have suffered a traumatic injury or experienced a medical emergency. Students will enter one of the simulation rooms and assess their patient according to the given scenario. The HPS’s can be programmed to present vital signs, symptoms, and even talk, making the patient interaction that more realistic.

“It’s definitely different performing a live hands-on analysis than it is in the classroom just discussing it,” said Army Spc. Eric Blanchard, a DCMT student. “It’s good to get out there before working with real people to get more comfortable going through the motions. Even though it was a little nerve wracking, I enjoyed it and I hope to do more and get even better.”

Blanchard’s classmate, Army Pvt. Joshua Becker said that the training helped him to listen to everything the patient is telling him and to try to get on their level to understand what’s happening to them. “Being there with the manikin and understanding what to do and seeing everything happen is a lot different from just trying to go over it in class or with a friend.” He said the setting helped with the realism as well. “It is kind of different seeing the patient in a kitchen instead of on the classroom floor.”

The EMT simulation labs took four months to build, starting in September 2019 and completed at the end of January 2020. About 4,800 students are projected to run through the simulation labs each year.

EMT instructor Army Sgt. Latrelle Brigham experienced a lab for the first time while overseeing Blanchard, Becker and their team’s training scenario. “It’s different to be on this side of the spectrum as opposed to actually going through the lanes because I was in their position at one time,” she commented.

“The sim labs have really come a long way from when I went through,” Brigham continued. “The technology has really improved as far as the manikins can breathe, they can talk and their eyes move. I like the set up for the labs. We didn’t have any of that. The students now get a better feel for actual patients.”

Blanchard summed up the experience by explaining that there are certain things he and his fellow classmates are not going to realize in a classroom, such as how a patient might respond to questions.

“We’re doing this as professionals,” said Blanchard, “so getting more training under us and understanding more about patient interaction is going to make all the difference.”

You also may be interested in...

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 3 - March 2020

Report
3/30/2020

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Update: Sexually transmitted infections, active component, U.S. Armed Forces, 2011–2019; Incidence of sexually transmitted infections before and after insertion of an intrauterine device or contraceptive implant, active component service women, U.S. Armed Forces, 2014–2019; Blood lead level surveillance among pediatric beneficiaries in the Military Health System, 2010–2017

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

TCCC prepares Airmen for domestic response

Article
3/9/2020
PATRIOT South 2020 participants complete two-day Tactical Combat Casualty Care training course during PATRIOT South 20 at Gulfport Combat Readiness Training Center. PATRIOT South 20 is an annual, accredited Joint National Training Capability exercise that provides a simulated natural disaster environment for units to test their response and capabilities to conduct domestic operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Wendy Kuhn)

TCCC is not only applicable in combat casualty care, but also in mass casualty, disaster response or terrorist situations as well

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

Eyes on it: Optometry clinic ensures mission readiness

Article
2/4/2020
Dr. Courtney Humphrey, 633rd Aerospace Medicine Squadron optometrist, holds a lens used to look into a patient’s eye at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, Jan. 27, 2020. Humphrey is one of three doctors in the Langley AFB optometry clinic, treating active duty personnel from all branches. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Sarah Dowe)

Eye exams are more than just reading a chart

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 2 - February 2020

Report
2/1/2020

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Update: Malaria, U.S. Armed Forces, 2019; Diabetes mellitus and gestational diabetes, active and reserve component service members and dependents, 2008–2018; Increased risk for stress fractures and delayed healing with NSAID receipt, U.S. Armed Forces, 2014–2018; Brief report: Diagnoses of scarlet fever in Military Health System (MHS) beneficiaries under 17 years of age across the MHS and in England, 2013–2018; Images in health surveillance: Skin rashes in children due to infectious causes

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

Sorry flu, not this year

Article
1/27/2020
U.S. Air Force Kathryn Klein, right, an aerospace medical service specialist with 182nd Medical Group, Illinois Air National Guard, administers an influenza vaccination during drill weekend at the 182nd Airlift Wing in Peoria, Ill., Dec. 8, 2019. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses, and the best prevention is getting a flu vaccine each year. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Paul R. Helmig II)

The Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support Medical supply chain teamed with Department of Defense partners to provide 3.4 million doses of the influenza vaccine to service members, dependents and retirees.

Recommended Content:

Immunization Healthcare | Health Readiness | Influenza Summary and Reports | Influenza, Northern Hemisphere | Seasonal Influenza Resource Center 2019-20

Mid-season flu activity increase: How to keep healthy

Article
1/22/2020
Navy Hospital Corpsman Kenny Liu, from San Jose, assigned to USS Gerald R. Ford's medical department, prepares a needle with a flu vaccination in the ship's hangar bay. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Angel Thuy Jaskuloski)

Despite reports of increased flu activity in the U.S., the Military Health System remains vigilant

Recommended Content:

Immunization Healthcare | Influenza Summary and Reports | Health Readiness | Influenza, Northern Hemisphere | Influenza, Southern Hemisphere | Vaccine Recommendations | Vaccine-Preventable Diseases | Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch

HPV vaccine age limit raised by FDA to age 45

Article
1/14/2020
https://www.nfid.org/infectious-diseases/hpv/ Recent CDC and FDA guidance recommends that men and women up to 45 years of age get vaccinated to protect against the Human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection and can cause certain cancers and genital warts. More than 14 million new HPV infections occur in the U.S. each year, and about 80 percent of sexually active men and women are infected with HPV at some point in their lives. (National Foundation for Infectious Diseases image)

HPV shot protects against a host of diseases in men, women

Recommended Content:

Conditions and Treatments | Health Readiness | Preventive Health | Men's Health | Women's Health | Immunization Healthcare | Vaccine-Preventable Diseases | Vaccine Recommendations

U.S. Transportation Command: DoD’s manager for global patient movement

Article
1/9/2020
An ambulance bus backs up to the Mississippi Air National Guard C-17 Globemaster III as Airmen prepare to unload patients at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. The bus transports the ill and/or injured to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. JBA and Travis Air Force Base, California, serve as the primary military entry points or hubs for patient distribution within the continental United States. (U.S. Air Force photo by Karina Luis)

On a weekly basis, USTRANSCOM moves up to 40 patients from overseas to CONUS

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Military Hospitals and Clinics

Joint Chiefs say mind, body, spirit all part of Total Force Fitness

Article
1/7/2020
Image of a Marine climbing a rope ladder

2020 focus on factors making service members, families “resilient”

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Operation Live Well | Total Force Fitness

Navy Medicine demonstrates Virtual Health options to Africa

Article
1/6/2020
Air Force Staff Sgt. Danny Lim practices conducting a throat examination on Army Sgt. Harvey Drayton at Chabelley Airfield, Djibouti. Drayton and Lim were introduced to the Telehealth In A Bag system during a recent visit that included personnel from Regional Health Command Europe's virtual health team. (U.S. Army photo by Russell Toof)

Djibouti hosts the largest U.S. American military base on the African continent

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Military Hospitals and Clinics

MSMR Vol. 27 No. 1 - January 2020

Report
1/1/2020

A monthly publication of the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch. This issue of the peer-reviewed journal contains the following articles: Carbon Monoxide Poisoning, Active and Reserve Component Service Members and Non-Service Member Beneficiaries of the Military Health System, U.S. Armed Forces, July 2009–June 2019; Respiratory Pathogen Surveillance Trends and Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Estimates for the 2018–2019 Season Among Department of Defense Beneficiaries; Brief Report: The Early Impact of the MHS GENESIS Electronic Health Record System on the Capture of Healthcare Data for the Defense Medical Surveillance System; and Brief Report: Incidence and Prevalence of Idiopathic Corneal Ectasias, Active Component, 2001–2018.

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Public Health

Air Force studies fatigue, sleep to enhance readiness

Article
12/31/2019
An Air Force Airman sleeps inside a C-17 Globemaster III during a flight over an undisclosed location in support of Operation Freedom Sentinel. (U.S. Air Force photo illustration)

Good sleep habits are closely related to overall health and performance

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Sleep

Guard and Reserve crucial to CCATT expansion

Article
12/20/2019
Air Force Maj. Lori Wyatt, a Critical Care Air Transport Team nurse, assigned to the 167th Airlift Wing, Martinsburg, West Virginia, assembles a gurney during a casualty evacuation training at the Raleigh County Memorial Airport. The Air Force is increasing the number of CCATTs to support future readiness requirements. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. De-Juan Haley)

The Guard and Reserve support the bulk of aeromedical evacuation, CCATT capabilities

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness

Air Force, Army medics save groom

Article
12/19/2019
Airmen from the 18th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron simulate life-saving procedures to a training manikin onboard a KC-135 Stratotanker during an exercise out of Kadena Air Base, Japan. The 18th AES maintains a forward operating presence, and was instrumental in saving an Airman’s life. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Matthew Seefeldt)

NCO’s first aeromedical evacuation mission was definitely challenging

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | Military Hospitals and Clinics

McCaffery calls for military medical strategic framework for warfighting readiness

Article
12/5/2019
Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs Tom McCaffery speaks on Thursday at the annual meeting of AMSUS, the Society of Federal Health Professionals. McCaffery announced to the nearly 2,000 conference attendees that he has asked the Military Health System's senior leadership to develop and codify a formal strategic framework to guide integrating and optimizing all MHS components to meet his vision. (MHS photo)

'New reality' includes tight synchronization, expanding partnerships

Recommended Content:

Health Readiness | MHS Transformation
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 40

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing | Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.