FAR FORWARD MEDICAL CARE
GRIZZLY COMBAT SERVICE SUPPORY MEDICAL TEAM
GRIZZLY 24, SFC GORDAN D. GAMBLIN
GRIZZLY 24A, SFC BRADLEY T. JOHANNINGSMEIER
Air/Land Battle doctrine stresses Far Forward Medical Care (FFMC). (FFMC)poses a significant challenge to both the maneuver and medical leaders. Historical analysis of battle injuries point to an important lesson: If immediate lifesaving treatment with early resuscitation and stabilization is completed within the first sixty minutes of injury, the patient has an excellent chance of survival through the evacuation process.
(FFMC) is the process of identifying and treating battlefield casualties as close to the forward edge of the battle area (FEBA)/forward line own troops (FLOT) as the tactical situation permits. On the battlefield, the ability of trained medical personnel to provide immediate far forward care is limited. The combat lifesaver (CLS) is the only link between the casualty living or dying. When he has no combat mission to perform the CLS may assist the combat medic in providing (FFMC) and preparing casualties for evacuation. However, the CLS's primary role is the performance of his duties as a member of the squad, crew, or team and his first aid duties are performed as the mission permits. The CLS in each squad, crew, or team is responsible for the first aid measures requiring a higher degree of skill than self-aid/buddy aid. Each squad, crew, or team should have at least one member trained to be a CLS. Immediate, far-forward care is essential on a widely dispersed and fluid battlefield to prevent soldiers from dying of wounds. Medical personnel may not be able to reach and apply lifesaving measures to all wounded soldiers at all points on the battlefield in a timely manner. The combat lifesaver is a non-medical soldier trained to provide lifesaving measures beyond the level of self-aid or buddy-aid. A properly trained combat lifesaver is capable of stabilizing many types of casualties.
The reality is that the benefits of having the maximum amount of trained CLS per unit as possible only adds to the unit combat effectiveness and survivability, lessening the impact on the medical support unit. The number one killer on the battlefield is loss of fluids. The bottom line is that a CLS can replace loss body fluid, which is the key to saving lives during the “golden hour”. The intent of the CLS is to act as an extender for the 91W (combat medic). With the high amount of turnover of personnel you may never reach the desired number of CLS within your unit, however you must always try to have more soldiers trained than what you have CLS Bags for. Combat lifesavers need to be exercised during home station training activities (to include FTXs) and during deployments for training (to include rotations through combat training centers).
Logistically, having one CLS bag per vehicle in a support battalion is recommended. Although a log unit does not have combat vehicles other than the Flots they do have 5-tons, POL trucks, M88’s, HET’s, HEMMITS and so on, each of those vehicles do dangerous missions and seem to find themselves in trouble i.e., wrecks often, so having a CLS in those vehicles only makes sense. It is also logical to have soldiers carry I.V. solution bags with I. V. tubing while in a training environment so they can get use to it for WAR. The combat medic carries all the extra needles.
The Combat Lifesaver Course (CLC) is offered through two modes. The primary mode is through the Army Correspondence Course Program (ACCP) using the group study. In this mode, instructors are provided lesson plans (sub-course IS0826), student self-study materials (sub-courses ISO824 and IS0825), written (multiple-choice) examinations, solutions to written examinations, and performance checklists. Training, testing, and grading are conducted under the supervision of qualified instructors at the soldiers' home stations. Instructions for enrolling in the ACCP mode are given in DA PAM 350-59, Army Correspondence Course Program Catalog.
There is an interactive CD-ROM from the Army Medical Department, developed by the National Guard Bureau. (CD 8-01, Combat Lifesaver: Medical Tasks) to be used for sustainment /refresher training of the CL medical tasks covered in sub-course ISO825. This CD-ROM is currently available from your local Training Support Center (TSC) or Visual Information Support Center.
From the Education standpoint those who pass the CLS will gain promotion points for their work (8 points, 40 Credit hours). Proof of combat lifesaver course completion that is provided by the Army Correspondence Course Program will be placed in the soldier's Military Personnel Records Jacket in accordance with AR 600-8-104. A pencil entry will be made in item 19 of the soldier's Personnel Qualification Record, DA FORM 2-1, noting the date that the soldier successfully completed the Combat Lifesaver Course.