HILL AIR FORCE BASE – It was a scene of organized chaos at the 75th Medical Group Clinic on Aug. 13 when the Medical Contingency Response Plan teams conducted an exercise aimed at maximizing medical training and readiness to Improve integration and the ability to respond to all threats.
It’s called the Ready Eagle and is a force-wide exercise led by the Air Force Medical Service and supported by consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton. The program aims to identify and train critical actions by all medical response teams, thereby standardizing efforts and improving readiness of the entire Air Force.
The Hill exercise scenario involved simulated biochemical explosions on the base that resulted in more than 50 “victims” in need of medical attention. The victims were volunteers dressed in moulage, which gave the exercise a sense of realism.
“We introduced medical professionals to all possible accident victims,” said Col. Tracie Swingle, commander of the 75th Medical Group – World Disaster. “
The exercise enabled teams to use the full range of medical skills to respond to any threat. The goal was to assist Air Force medics in preparation for any type of chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, explosive, or mass casualty incident.
“It’s my responsibility to give our airmen the tools they need to respond to any situation,” said Swingle. “The more we train and can train and understand our obstacles, the better prepared we will be.”
Ready Eagle is a week-long program that goes from classroom work to table exercises before ending with a simulated major event with a keystone. The final mass casualty incident is designed to fully underscore the response of a team.
“We want to test our ability to secure a crime scene and help people who have been injured not only from an explosion point of view, but also from a chemical or biological point of view,” said Col. Lance Nussbaum, the 75th public health officer. MDG. “We practice our medical teams and decontamination teams.”
The medical teams will do a “hot wash” shortly after the exercise to discuss the lessons learned, including what went well and what could be improved.