We’ve been having discussions about individual medical capabilities and the role of a partisan lifesaver. Where does the medic fit into all of this? What training should you try to get if that is the role you’ve been placed into?
Army Doctrine says the combat medic’s main job is to treat casualties and assist in the evacuation of casualties if required. The other responsibilities are to
- Train members of the platoon to be combat lifesavers
- Work with the Platoon Sergeant to formulate a medical plan for each mission
- Stays connected with Medical Platoon leadership
- Advised the Platoon Leader on any health issues within the platoon
- Ensures platoon has the required medical supplies needed for every mission
Now how does this apply to a partisan environment? Well, it just takes a little molding for our purposes.
- Treat sick and wounded members and interact with the guerilla hospital for higher-level care decisions
- Train members of the group on basic skills and identify members for PLS training
- Work with group leaders to develop a medical plan
- Stay connected with guerilla hospital and any available higher medical care
- Advise group leaders of any health issues within the group
- Ensure the group has necessary medical supplies for not only daily life but potential combat operations
See how this is mostly the same just worded differently? Our end goals are the same whether you are a line medic or you’re a guerilla medic. The main thing that changes are our population size, and our common injuries. Military medics plan and train for combat-related injuries along with field injuries. In a partisan setting, we are going to have to handle A LOT more than just military-age males getting hurt either in combat, or preparing for it.
You are going to have to deal with children and all the injuries they sustain, elderly people, and people having more kids. Have you given any of this a thought? A guerilla hospital is more than just a backroom with a cot. I’ll definitely be talking more about this topic, but I figured it had to start somewhere.
If you’re coming into this being designated as your group medical person, what training do you have currently? I’ve been asked a few times what training someone should get if they are their group’s medic. If you are an EMT or Paramedic I really recommend attending a wilderness first responder course. It has a heavy focus on austere environments that I think apply perfectly to a partisan environment. A college-level anatomy and physiology class would also be extremely beneficial in helping to understand the human body.
Education is a never-ending pursuit and medical education is no different. There are plenty of good medical podcasts out there, plus different reference books. It would probably benefit you to volunteer at a local ems agency or with your local search and rescue. Both are great ways to keep your skills up.
The main role of a medic has always been and always will be to support combat arms. For a partisan environment, this is no different but we also have the added responsibility of group medical care for a patient subset that is VERY different from what a normal military medic sees.