Rick C. Mathews, Director
National Center for Security & Preparedness
423 State Street
Albany, NY 12203
5900 Airport Road
Oriskany, NY 13424
10 December, 2012
On November 28th – 29th, 2012, the National Center for Security & Preparedness (NCSP) and the New York State Preparedness Training Center (SPTC) conducted the first pilot for the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Triage and Multiple Casualty Incident (MCI) Management course. The training is part of a wider effort by the NCSP and SPTC to provide high-end, scenario-based training for the EMS community. These courses reinforce and build upon existing skills, introducing techniques designed to prepare responders for terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other catastrophic events. Triage and MCI management are essential skills for EMS personnel when responding to such events.
In this course, students learned and practiced concepts and skills related to MCI scene management and patient triage through a mixture of skill-based activities, classroom discussion, and scenario-based training. Following a brief introduction and MCI overview, instructors and students discussed the START, SMART, JumpSTART, and SALT triage systems in the context of multiple casualty incidents. Short classroom discussion was followed by small group skill development lanes, which encouraged students to build and exercise the skills covered during the course. Each skill lane also presented students with challenges, such as low light and difficult patient movement environments. Students then participated in a tabletop exercise using the Rosterfield simulation board to discuss MCI management.
Students finished the training by participating in several scenarios. The scenarios in this course utilized the SPTC’s reality-based training venues and live role players to immerse students in MCIs. Each scenario was designed to exercise the students’ baseline and newly learned skills in a realistic environment. At the conclusion of each scenario, SME-instructors provided students with feedback about the decisions they made to triage and treat patients, focusing on the key learning points from classroom instruction and skill development lanes.
Sixteen students from EMS and fire services across New York State participated, with certifications ranging from Basic EMT to Paramedic. The pilot was taught by eleven EMS Subject Matter Expert (SME) instructors from across the United States.
Based heavily on the positive student feedback, the NCSP and SPTC will continue to develop the EMS Triage and Multiple Casualty Management course for future offerings. This course will join EMS Special Situations, the Advanced Active Shooters Scenario: Tactics & Operations Course, and the Tactical Emergency Casualty Care workshop on the rapidly growing list of courses for EMS at the SPTC.