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177th Medical Group trains for tactical combat casualty care

U.S. Air Force Airman Carol T. Martinez, 177th Medical Group public health technician, participates in Tactical Combat Casualty Care training Sept. 15, 2020, at the 177th Fighter Wing, Egg Harbor Township, N.J. TCCC training teaches life-saving techniques and strategies for providing the best trauma care on the battlefield.

U.S. Air Force Airman Carol T. Martinez, 177th Medical Group public health technician, participates in Tactical Combat Casualty Care training Sept. 15, 2020, at the 177th Fighter Wing, Egg Harbor Township, N.J. TCCC training teaches life-saving techniques and strategies for providing the best trauma care on the battlefield.

ATLANTIC CITY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, N.J. – The 177th Medical Group trained in combat casualty care Sept. 14-15.

The training was provided by the nonprofit Southern New Jersey EMS Collaborative, which educates first responders in medical, disaster and tactical operations.

“Tactical Combat Casualty Care, or TCCC, is for medics, physicians, nurses, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, etc.,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Justin E. Kaenzig, the 4N functional manager at the 177th Fighter Wing. “It’s training on combat casualty care that you would see implemented in both a deployed location, as well as here in the United States.”

The Tactical Combat Casualty Care - Medical Provider (TCCC-MP) course is not a “one-size-fits-all” class.

“There are different levels,” said Kaenzig. “Particularly, we’re going through the medical provider, but there are other levels. There’s a four-hour course, an eight-hour course, a 16-hour course and a 40-hour course.”

Kaenzig said the course should be taught throughout the Air Force, including the Air National Guard and Air Force Reserves.

“I feel that when it comes to the Medical Group, and the Wing as a whole, TCCC-MP would benefit everybody, because it reinforces the wingman concept,” said Kaenzig. “In a mass casualty situation, anyone is able to be pulled for any situation related to caring for a patient. In my opinion, this training is absolutely necessary for all Airmen to know before they go into the AOR (Area of Responsibility), or combat zones in the United States.”

If the goal is to have more Airmen trained, the fact that it was hosted at the 177th Fighter Wing is a step in the right direction.

“The benefit of having the training here is that it increases the maximum amount of Airmen who can receive it,” said Kaenzig.

The TCCC-MP isn’t just beneficial to Airmen whose careers come with a medical inclination.

“It really gets seen by wing leadership,” said Kaenzig. “Other sections get to see it as well. Our fire department (177th Civil Engineer Squadron firefighters) and ASOS (177th Air Support and Operations Squadron); the Fire Department is made up of first responders, and ASOS ends up in the field.”

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