By Airman 1st Class Haley N. Blevins | 460th Space Wing Public Affairs
BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — The Human Performance Center, with the recent move of Public Health to Medical Group South, now houses a new medical simulation lab and training facility, dubbed the Medical Skills Lab, for the 460th Medical Group.
Chief Master Sgt. Robert Devall, 460th Space Wing command chief, visited the newly re-designated facility to witness and participate in the training first-hand.
“Being able to tour the Medical Skills Lab was great,” said Devall. “I could see how much effort and time was put into making the facility something that benefits us now, and in the future.”
Currently there are four medical technicians providing support in response to COVID-19, and caring for patients at Evans Army Community Hospital in Fort Carson, Colo. The inpatient skills taught at the new training facility are beneficial for medical technicians that may have to provide support as well.
“Our 460th MDG is adapting their training and providing support for something that is affecting people all over the world, said Chief Devall, “With the new Medical Skills Lab and the training they receive here, they will be equipped to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic in our area if needed.”
Before the standing up of the skills lab, there wasn’t much space for education and training. All the supplies needed for simulation labs were locked away in storage. So, the 460th MDG found an innovative way to address the problem by allocating current resources to help enhance mission capabilities.
“We hardly had any classroom space anywhere in our previous location,” said Lt. Col. Darren Damiani, chief nurse from the 460th MDG. “It would take hours to set up for training whereas now we already have everything set up.”
Now nurses, providers, and medical technicians can go into the simulation lab and practice honing their skills.
The new training course focuses on clinical skills essential to inpatient treatment, specifically those infected with the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
“What we do [at our medical clinic] is outpatient treatment,” said Damiani. “Inpatient nursing and medical treatment are a whole different ball game and a whole different set of skills.”
The basic inpatient skills being covered include patient movement, intake and output, inserting IVs, nasogastric tubes and foley catheters and much more. The training enables the medical and nursing staff to be prepared to provide support elsewhere.
“With COVID-19 impacting so many people, there’s a chance that we would actually have to augment downtown or deploy to conduct inpatient treatment,” said Damiani. “It is more advantageous for us to take part of our staff to potentially augment Veteran’s Affairs, so they can support the intake of 30 to 40 more patients.”