Disaster Life Support Course Held

The Ohio Dept. of Health sponsored an Advanced Disaster Life Support Course for the local Medical Reserve Corps at Southern Ohio Medical Center June 9-11, welcoming representatives from area agencies to train for administering life support in all kinds of disasters.

Representatives from Wright State University presented two days of instruction followed by a day of drills at the Friends Community Center, with life support practice mannequins, a decontamination tent and other equipment. Part of the exercises included a simulated explosion and fire, with area high school students volunteering as “victims” needing rescued.

Among agencies and groups participating were the local Medical Reserve Corps, the Portsmouth City and Scioto County health departments, Vinton County Health Department, Grant Medical Center, local Emergency Medical Services, SOMC’s medical students, and Dr. Wayne Wheeler, medical director of Life Ambulance; Dr. Jason Cheatham, SOMC Emergency Medicine physician, and Dr. Aaron Adams, Scioto County Health Commissioner.

“You can plan and prepare, but this (exercise) opens our eyes as to what we can do as a community, as a team, as a bunch of trained individuals to work as a group and function with limited resources,” Dr. Adams said.

The Medical Reserve Corps is a group of trained medical professionals who volunteer their expertise to support the community in emergency and disaster preparedness.