Combat medics obviously have one of the most vital and dangerous jobs in the military. Combat medics spend countless hours in MOS school over several months in San Antonio, TX. And this isn’t just for the Army. The Navy Combat Medics, known as “corpsmen,” attend the same school. A combat medic has to learn how to save lives and learn so much about emotional and psychological situations as well as medical. Many lives would be lost if not for combat medics risking their lives in combat.
What They Learn
A combat medic trains in a large variety of medical education and not just for combat situations. They learn how to properly attend to injured, ill, and wounded soldiers. They learn how to place an IV, how to properly and safely transport injured and wounded soldiers, and how to properly document medical records. They train to at least an EMT basic level. They are nurses, providers, and life savers.
Their responsibilities are to provide trauma first-aid care on the battlefield and in a troop medical clinic. They are also tasked with providing continuing medical care in the absence of a physician, including care for disease and battle injuries. The combat medic is assigned to each specific unit and will serve with them in all combat actions. They must know how to properly and accurately fire a weapon and qualify with their weapon just the same as combat soldiers. Their duties include assisting with outpatient and inpatient care and treatment. They will prepare blood samples for lab testing and prepare operating rooms, supplies, and equipment for surgery.
The Navy Corpsman
The Navy corpsman serves the same position, attends the same schools, and learns the same information as an Army combat medic will. The corpsman will serve in Marine units and train as a Marine combat solider while also providing medical care for Marines in combat.
Both the combat medic and corpsman will learn patient care, emergency medical techniques, methods of sterilizing medical equipment, and even plaster cast techniques. They will administer immunizations and drawing blood for testing.
Because of their advanced responsibilities, combat medics are some of the most intelligent soldiers in the military. The amount of information they learn in such a short time would normally take years on the civilian side. They will also pass on their knowledge by training non-medical personnel (every soldier) in emergency life-saving techniques, such as how to seal a wound or properly place a tourniquet.
Lifesavers of the Battlefield
The combat medics are the life savers of the battlefield. Without them, many lives would be lost. They constantly risk their lives in battle to save another. 52 combat medics have been awarded the nation’s highest honor, the Congressional Medal of Honor. You can see why this is such a vital and important occupation in the military. Without the combat medic and the jobs they do, we would not win any battle or war. They are all true heroes!
To the veterans and current combat medics, we thank you. You are all the true heroes that protect freedom and save lives. You serve in a dangerous job and do it with grace and honor. We thank you!