Keesler Medical Professionals Get Practice at Simulation Lab

Learning how to save the life of a hero: that’s the job of the Touchstone Medical Simulation Lab at the Keesler 81st Medical Center. The Simulation Lab is only one of 17 labs globally, and seven nationally, keeping their patients alive.

While in the field, a soldier has a 99% survival rate if they have a pulse and can make it to a surgeon within an hour following their trauma. It’s labs like this one that save precious seconds, keeping soldiers alive long enough to receive adequate medical assistance in the field.

Major Shane Steiner of Keesler Medical Center says, “Well if someone is bleeding from an artery for example, or if they have a blocked airway and can’t breathe, or they’ve stopped breathing, you have minutes, you have two, three, four minutes to save their life, and any delay in anything you do, even just with how you move your arms and your legs is going to cost you seconds. So the more of those seconds we can shave off, the sooner we can get the lifesaving action to be taken.”

When it comes to simulation, manikins are key to medical personnel. It helps them learn how to react to real life traumas while out in the field. Major Jennifer Wolf of Keesler Medical Center says, “It’s more realistic in the sense because you have manikins that can bleed and so you’re looking at this bleeding manikin and you’re like, ‘I have to stop the bleeding.’ You’re not pretending to stop the bleeding, you’re actually stopping the bleeding. It’s really more realistic as opposed to just pretending to go through the motions.”

Hands on experience, repetition, and saving lives become instincts. Major Steiner closes, “So when you arrive for the first time to put an airway in a patient that can’t breathe anymore, it’s not the first time you’ve ever tried it. You’ve done it five to ten times in the simulation lab.”

Training in labs like this one is key to getting soldiers back home safely to their loved ones.

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