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Sailors learn to save lives aboard USS San Antonio

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Posted: Wednesday, September 4, 2013 10:51 am

USS SAN ANTONIO, At Sea -- Sailors from the amphibious transport dock ship USS San Antonio (LPD 17), volunteered to learn basic first-aid and stretcher-bearer training, Aug. 21.

Receiving training from the medical department on how to treat basic wounds, Sailors train on starting intravenous infusions (IVs) and how to assist the medical department during an emergency aboard the ship.

“Being in the military, we must always be prepared for any situation at any time, and this training we are receiving plays a vital part in the ship’s readiness,” said Seaman Frimrose Baker, a volunteer. “It gives me great pride and confidence knowing that if anything was to happen to my shipmates I would know how to assist them or even save their life.”

With more than 950 Sailors and Marines aboard San Antonio, it’s important to have as many people trained on the basis of first-aid a corpsman explains.

“Hospital Corpsmen are not always able to make it to the scene in a timely manner, taking into account how big the ship is, and the number of corpsman aboard,” said Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Harvey Canto. “The training that the crew receives provides more than just knowledge of wound care – it provides a chance for a life to be saved.”

Sailors also qualified to become stretcher-bearers during the training, who are responsible for assisting and transporting the wounded.

“During the medical drills the stretcher bearers may not be the first ones on the scene, but they can be an integral part in the life-saving process,” said Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Mariah Dunnam. “From what we have taught them, they have done a great job at helping provide care to the patients.”

While underway, the medical department has conducted various mass casualty drills, medical response team drills and general quarter drills, which allows the crew to exercise the knowledge they have received.

“Our mission is to provide care for those who are in need of it and the Sailors aboard are committed to doing all the necessary requirements,” said Baker.

San Antonio is deployed as part of the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group and, with the embarked 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (26th MEU), is deployed in support of maritime security operations and theater security cooperations efforts in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility.

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