By Matt Orr, Stars and Stripes
Pacific edition, Tuesday, April 6, 2010
CAMP HANSEN, Okinawa — Their pupils can dilate. They can replicate abnormal breathing patterns. They can bleed and even go into shock.
They can also help save lives.
That’s a lot to ask of a manikin, but the staff of the newly opened III Marine Expeditionary Force Casualty Simulation Center is confident in its state-of-the-art gear.
“They are wireless, tetherless manikins that can simulate any battle injury that we give it,” instructor Petty Officer 1st Class Jeremy Dunlap said during the final day of a recent combat life-saving course for Marines.
The SimMan 3G manikins cost $65,000 each. They are the main teaching tool at the center, which opened in September. Classes with the manikins began in February, officials said.
The center is the first in the Navy and Marine Corps to use the SimMan 3G manikins for training, officials said. The Army also uses them.
“If you give a guy in the field a [medical scenario] card, they look at you like a deer in the headlights,” said Mark Kane, an instructor who retired from the Navy after serving 25 years as a corpsman. “With this, you get a realistic training experience. This thing does it all.”
While the students are working, instructors can change the manikins’ vital signs, making the students think on their feet, Kane and Dunlap said.
“We teach the Marines the three major war wounds — [blood loss], chest injuries and airway management,” Dunlap said, explaining that a corpsman is not always available. “The course is designed to build confidence in the Marines before they have to stick their buddy.”
“The training is very realistic,” said Sgt. Jasper Ryan, who has undergone the training and will deploy soon. “It will definitely save lives on the battlefield.”
Used with permission from the Stars and Stripes. ©2010 Stars and Stripes. Photos by Matt Orr / Stars and Stripes
(Top Photo) Petty Officer 1st Class Jeremy Dunlap (left) and retired Navy Corpsman Mark Kane (second from left) briefs Marines and sailors from Special Operation Training Group after they finished treating a manikin during a medical simulation scenario.
(Middle photo) Marines and sailors from Special Operations Training Group work on a manikin that is able to replicate real life day of testing for a weeklong course designed to reinforce and teach battle injuries. The SOTG Marines and sailors were undergoing their final life-saving skills they may encounter on a battlefield.
(Bottom photo) Petty Officer 1st Class Jeremy Dunlap (left) briefs Marines and sailors from Special Operation Training Group after they finished treating a mannequin during a medical simulation scenario. The mannequins are able to replicate real life responses.