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December 9, 2013 at 5:57 PM

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446th Aeromedical squadrons train to save lives


MARCUS YAM / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Simulating a landing near Moses Lake, members of the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron practice moving patients on stretchers on and off the the C-17 Globemaster 3 aircraft, while the engine is running.

On a cold early morning, members of the 446th Aeromedical Staging Squadron (ASTS) along with the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron (AES) underwent early stages of an integrated training under real-world circumstances at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The goal is to work on the seamless patient transfer between the ASTS and load them onto a patient transfer bus and then onboard the AES transport aircraft, where the flight medical crew takes over care for flight to another location.

ASTS members learn the proper techniques for carrying patients on stretchers with care and the proper way to enter the loading ramp of the awaiting transport aircraft. Both squadrons have to relay critical patient information and charts swiftly and accurately. After the loading ramp of the C-17 Globemaster III aircraft shuts, the AES crew along with the patients are flown up to a cruising altitude of 27,000 feet and the flight medical crew get an opportunity to run different realistic inflight medical scenarios, while some receive evaluations and certifications before their deployments.



MARCUS YAM / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Capt. Noel Carroll, middle, awaits a response from 1st Lt. Naomi Warner, left, as members of the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron undergo their in-flight medical training.

MARCUS YAM / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Master Sgt. Kristen Lewis helps train members of the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron begin their medical training by going through different simulated conditions and scenarios on board the C-17 Globemaster 3 aircraft. The Aeromedical Staging and Evacuation squadrons will work together on essential things like, readying triage patients out of any deployed location, flying patients in and out, and getting the flight medical crew to take over care during flight.

MARCUS YAM / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Master Sgt. Cam Vaillant, top center, along with fellow members of the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron run through a medical scenario involving multiple patients during their inflight training on board the C-17 Globemaster 3 aircraft flying at cruising altitude.

MARCUS YAM / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Technical Sgt. James Millan, top, learns methods on how to calm a distressed injured patient and keep her laying still.

MARCUS YAM / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Senior Master Sgt. J.P. Wirth, center, trains with fellow members of the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron as they undergo their inflight medical training. It's the first time the Evacuation and Staging squadrons will execute this training in years to improve unit readiness, potentially increasing the survival rate of American troops that are still abroad.

For more photos, visit the gallery.

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