Emergency drill looks, feels real for AU med students

Published: Jun. 8, 2022 at 6:18 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Firehoses full of water, doctors performing CPR and helicopters on standby.

It wasn’t real, but it definitely looked real during a training simulation Wednesday in Augusta.

The goal of the training was to give Augusta first responders and medical students some real-world experience with serious medical situations.

Plus the medical students say it builds camaraderie.

The Augusta University students stepped into emergency medical technician and firefighter boots for the day.

“It’s been very educational, very entertaining and fun,” said Stephen Ingle, a third-year emergency medicine resident. “It’s been a good time.”

But when the sirens went off, things got serious, with students crammed in the back of a moving ambulance with a trauma patient who had no pulse.

“We did a trail code in the back of the ambulance, so being able to see their equipment and see what you have available, work in that confined space, that is very eye-opening and lets you understand what they’re dealing with,” Ingle said.

The event was missed for the past couple of years due to the pandemic.

But it’s back as part of an effort to make sure new firefighters and emergency room doctors are prepared for anything.

“It helps gain a better respect of what happens pre-hospital care-wise from the fire and EMS side,” said Matt Talbott, an EMS fellow and physician with AU.

It’s all about making quick decisions that are the right decisions in stressful situations.

“You’ve got to be able to handle the situation fast and decide whether you’re going to do a load and go and try and get them to the hospital as quickly as possible or if it’s going to a prolonged scene care,” Talbott said.

The hope is to limit delays and errors in patient care as much as possible.

“It makes it easier when we bring a patient into the hospital. They understand what we’ve had to go through or what we saw when we explain those situations,” said Capt. Chris Rockwell, EMS coordinator. “Eventually, it will produce a much better patient care in the long run.”

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