STONY CREEK - More than a dozen emergency medical responders from the area participated recently in a drill to sharpen their skills in attending to the needs of those in distress.
The Stony Creek Emergency Squad hosted a drill Nov. 18 employing a remote-controlled mannequin with interactive features to help simulate a medical crisis and provide feedback on emergency medical technicians' response efficiency. The dummy uttered words, exhibited a blood pressure, a pulse, breath sounds, and reactive pupils. The mannequin had a simulated heart attack and, in another episode, he presented symptoms of trauma associated with a motorcycle crash, including considerable blood loss and undergoing shock.
Stony Creek Emergency Squad members, along with their counterparts from Johnsburg Emergency Medical Services and the ambulance squad from Lake Luzerne, were put to a test of their skills, as the responders' performance was recorded on a video camera for analysis and critique. This interactive-mannequin training was the result of a special study grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The pilot grant is envisioned to launch an ongoing program to help train rural squads in the North Country.
Leading the program were paramedic Bob Elling, clinical instructor in Cardio-respiratory and Emergency Medicine at Hudson Valley Community College, and EMT Greg Vis, president of Hudson Simulation Services. The purpose of the grant is to gauge the feasibility of introducing this type of training in the North Country, and to help small rural squads with retention and recruitment by providing exceptional training experiences - as well as boost emergency care in rural communities.