Advanced Trauma Life Support training
By Airman 1st Class Alexander Merchak, 60th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
/ Published March 09, 2021
TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif.— Nine service members participated in Advanced Trauma Life Support training course March 3-4 at David Grant USAF Medical Center at Travis Air Force Base, California.
ATLS is designed to teach non-surgical specialties how to effectively provide on-site care to severely injured patients downrange.
“By providing this course at David Grant, we are directly impacting the quality and quantity of military medical personnel that are able to deploy around the world to support contingency operations,” said Lt. Col. Brent Feldt, 60th Surgical Operations Squadron, chief of head and neck surgery and course director of ATLS.
The course simulated treating traumatic injuries as well as included participation in skill stations and conducting patient assessments.
“This training teaches you to assess the patients and deliver those lifesaving interventions,” said Capt. Maggie Spruce, 60th Surgical Operations Squadron general surgery resident. If you didn’t have it, then lives would be lost.”
Feldt emphasized that the training is not to prepare military medical professionals for common surgical operations. It is to provide non-surgical specialties with the tools to save lives downrange.
“You don’t need me to do your tonsillectomy at Travis; you can go to Vacaville or Fairfield and get your tonsils removed. You need me to go to Afghanistan and save your life when you’re shot in the neck,” Feldt said.
David Grant USAF Medical Center adopted ATLS training from the American College of Surgeons and partnered with surgeons from University of California, San Francisco; University of California, Davis; and Kaiser Permanente Vacaville Medical Center to ensure the success of the course.
The ATLS training is a mandatory readiness item. Upon completing the course, service members receive a certificate of completion valid for four years and are able to maintain a current deployment status.