MRF: Ready to respond

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11 Nov 2019 | OPS & TRAINING

MRF: Ready to respond

These troopers are ready to swing into action if a Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Explosive (CBRE) attack happens. Join the combat medics of the Medical Response Force (MRF) as they deal with casualty management and on-site decontamination during a night training exercise.

// Story Chia Chong Jin

// Photos Chai Sian Liang

Every year, about 30 to 40 Full-time National Serviceman (NSF) trainees go through a seven-week MRF Platoon Conversion Course with the aim of becoming combat medics in this elite medical force.
Once the MRF arrives at the scene of a CBRE incident, the combat medics will immediately be tasked to extricate and evacuate casualties. Here, a medic is checking the casualty’s vital conditions to determine the severity of his injuries.
The medics giving the casualties a “hasty decontamination” – an initial spray-down to remove as much of the hazardous agents as possible. They will then be triaged according to the severity of their injuries.

Injured or unconscious casualties are classified as P1 (the most seriously injured) or P2, while those who can still walk are classified P3. Casualties who have succumbed to their injuries are classified P0.

Casualties will then be taken to the decontamination unit. P1 and P2 casualties are brought into the blue tentage at the side of a Medical Decontamination/Transport Vehicle (MDTV), while P3 casualties are taken inside the vehicle. Here, they will be thoroughly scrubbed and sprayed down to cleanse any trace of the decontaminants.
Once done with the decontamination process, the medics will move the casualties to a second MDTV via the Stretcher-on-Wheels.
The medics using the Chemical Agent Monitor to scan the casualties to ensure that they are free of hazardous agents before entering the second MDTV.
The MRF are trained to provide many lifesaving medical procedures, such as intravenous (IV) therapy, Advanced Trauma Life Support and Advanced Cardiac Life Support. Here, a medic is administering IV medication to one of the casualties in the MDTV.

After the casualties are assessed and stabilised, they will be evacuated to hospitals via ambulances for further treatment.

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