“It makes it all the more important that soldiers learn this stuff because you never know when you’re going to need to save someone in combat.”
The classes are on Mondays and one week in length. Despite the short duration, coupled with the vast amount of information, Hatley said soldiers have done well.
“This is the first class Headquarters and Headquarters Battery have taught,” said Hatley, “but everyone is doing pretty well. We provide soldiers the information in a variety of ways. It’s a combination of slide shows, book reading and hands-on. There is a hands-on exercise with everything we cover in the book.”
Pvt. Travis Hirsch, a power generator mechanic with Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 2-77 FA, said the training was extensive and beneficial.
“We learned everything from evacuating a casualty to treating chest and head wounds and fractures,” said Hirsch. “It is good training to have because you just never know. Anything can happen and everyone should be prepared.”
For soldiers who haven’t taken the course yet, Lewis said they shouldn’t worry. The information taught to soldiers comes directly from approved training support material; so if the class is taken seriously, no one will have a problem becoming qualified.
“There is a written guideline, like a checklist, that we teach and grade by,” said Lewis. “We expect soldiers to know every process step-by-step; however, the most important thing is to save the life of the patient. If a soldier forgets a step or two but still succeeds in saving the life of the casualty, then the training was successful.”
Once soldiers become initially certified, they will have a mandatory retest every following year to ensure they’ve retained the knowledge.