US Navy doctors and hospital corpsmen held a Combat Lifesaver (CLS) training course for service members at Honduran naval base Base Naval de Puerto Castilla as part of Southern Partnership Station 17 (SPS 17).
The medical professionals provided this course in the event that hospital corpsmen are not available in combat casualty situations.
“If there’s a mass casualty, or the corpsman is injured, or the corpsman is not available, you teach CLS so that Marines, Seabees or whoever can sustain life,” said Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Kara Irons, the command tactical combat casualty care program manager at Naval Health Clinic Quantico.
She said usually only two hospital corpsmen deploy with a standard combat unit, which creates a demand for non-medical members to have casualty response training.
The course covered multiple topics, such as proper application of an IV tube, how to administer a nasopharyngeal airway tube, and how to apply tourniquets to control bleeding.
The first two days of the three-day CLS class consisted of education and practical application of techniques. The third day, however, contained a realistic combat mass casualty simulation.
The training event tested the students’ ability to operate under a stressful and chaotic environment.
One of the course attendees, Logistics Specialist 1st Class Justin McClelland, supply leading petty officer for the 22nd Naval Construction Regiment, spoke about the valuable information the course provides, for situations in and out of the military.
“I think it is beneficial to anywhere I may go with the Navy in the future,” said McClelland. “Also, I think it’s beneficial to have this knowledge in the civilian sector too.”