USARPAC medics tested for EFMB

| November 9, 2012 | 0 Comments

Pfc. Cory Compton, combat medic, 25th ID, finishes an IV on a mannequin arm during training for the EFMB, Nov. 1. Earning the badge is difficult, and the training can mean the difference between life and death for patients.

Story and photos by
Sgt. 1st Class Rodney Jackson
18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) Public Affairs

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — U.S. Army-Pacific medical specialists tackled three different combat tactical lanes that included 46 different medical tasks.

Lt. Gen. Patricia Horoho (standing, center), Army Surgeon General and commander, U.S. Army MEDCOM, and Brig. Gen. Dennis Doyle (standing, left), commander, PRMC and TAMC, observe Soldiers and cadre training for the EFMB, Nov. 1.

The medics passed a written test, day and night land navigation, and then finished a 12-mile foot march before walking onto their graduation field to earn the prestigious Expert Field Medical Badge, Nov. 8.

After a rough week of intensive studying and training during long days and nights, candidates from across the Pacific theater, from many different Army medical disciplines, went through another week of testing to obtain the badge. In 2010, the passing rate by candidates who tested then was 17 percent.

While observing the training, Army Surgeon General Lt. Gen. Patricia Horoho, commander, U.S. Army Medical Command, and Brig. Gen. Dennis Doyle, commander, Pacific Regional Medical Command and Tripler Army Medical Center, visited Soldiers on one of the training lanes to provide encouragement.

“The rigorous training and testing for the EFMB is a powerful reminder that Army medical professionals exist, first and foremost, to save lives,” said Horoho. “The ability to quickly intervene and provide lifesaving actions that keep patients alive and stabilized until they’re evacuated to a hospital is mission one for these candidates.”

These interventions buy time for the injured so that the rest of the team can offer definitive care to save lives. Horoho said that these interventions are often accomplished in austere and difficult situations, and the EFMB confirms the Soldiers’ medical abilities.

The hard work of the course cadre, who focused on adhering to the standards for the EFMB, impressed Doyle. Even if Soldiers didn’t receive the badge for any reason, they would still be much better medics for all the training received, he said.

Lt. Gen. Patricia Horoho (center), Surgeon General and Commanding General of the U.S. Army Medical Command, observes Soldiers and cadre training for the Expert Field Medical Badge, Nov. 1.

“It makes you think about what a lot of the line medics are doing in their job specialty,” said Staff Sgt. Vance Maxey, dental technician, Tripler Dental Clinic. “Going through this course makes you have an understanding of what they’re doing outside of your military occupational skill.”

The training was motivating, making you want to get dirty and learn new, rather than routine, skills, said Maxey.

Many still went home without the EFMB, but they received a certificate for completing the training.

Doyle stated he was very impressed, as Soldiers (and their families) expect medics and dental techs to be proficient in all skills, even under combat conditions.

The 18th Medical Command (Deployment Support) team performed a magnificent job in training, resourcing and maintaining the standard that the EFMB represents, as well.

(Editor’s Note: Final EFMB results will be included in an update version of this story.)

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Category: News, Training

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