13th Annual Golden Medic training in Augusta

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Saturday, June 16, 2007, News 12 at 6 O'Clock

It's a simulation designed to save lives. The Golden Medic is a U.S Army sponsored exercise held every year to train soldiers how to stabilize wounded soldiers in the field. Their mission may be temporary relief but the care they give can be critical.

If you were a soldier and wounded in a combat zon your life would luy in their hands.

"It's pretty much exactly the type of medical scenarios that they will meet in iraq," says Brigadier General Richard Stone.

The 13th annual Golden Medic trains three thousand soldiers, five hundred airmen and observers from the U.S Navy, Germany, Canada, Great Britain and Turkmenistan.

They learn the ropes of providing temporary, medical care without the use of utilities like electricity or running water.

"It puts things into perspective," says Major David Rawlings. He traveled from an ally nation to watch American forces train. It's necessary, he says, because stabilizing wounded soldiers is universal.

"it's always easier to do these things in training than have to learn it on the hoof as it were in the field," he says.

And the field can be a frantic one.

"When you're in pain you start screaming, you're flying as fast as you can, you're talking on the radios," says one medic.

Golden medics have no surgical capabilities but can give temporary care for up to seventy-two hours.

Their mission is to keep soldiers stable while they wait for transportation to arrive.

They're the first responders and the last stop before a more permanent, combat hospital.

Golden Medic will become Global Medic next year to include international coalition forces.

Currently the survival rate is ninety-six percent for patients who make it to a treatment facility; that's twenty percent higher than Vietnam.

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