Army Trauma Training Center Marks a Decade by Thanking Miller School Life-Savers

Marking the 10th anniversary of the Army Trauma Training Center (ATTC) at the Ryder Trauma Center, the U.S. Army last week recognized the contributions of Kenneth G. Proctor, Ph.D., professor of surgery, anesthesiology and biomedical engineering, and Jeffrey Augenstein, M.D., Ph.D., professor of surgery and director of the William Lehman Injury Research Center, to improving medical outcomes for soldiers and others wounded in war zones.

LTC George D. Garcia, M.D., assistant professor of surgery and director of the ATTC, presented Proctor and Augenstein with the Commander’s Public Service Award for providing important trauma research to the U.S. Department of Defense and for helping to establish the curriculum for the Forward Surgical Teams that train at Ryder before deploying to Iraq and Afghanistan. Proctor was recognized in particular for developing a “premiere mass casualty training exercise” that has greatly enhanced the life-saving capabilities of the surgical teams, and Augenstein for being “instrumental” to the overall success of the ATTC.

Recognizing the vital support of the Miller School and its Gordon Center for Research in Medical Education, Garcia also presented certificates of appreciation to Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean, and Ivette Motola, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of clinical medicine and director of the Gordon Center’s Division of Prehospital and Emergency Healthcare.

“The success of our program would not have been possible without the many partnerships and friendships extended to us over the last ten years,’’ Garcia told the crowd, which included Jackson Health System CEO Carlos Migoya, at the October 5 ceremony in the ATTC’s Gordon Center classroom. “It is no exaggeration that each and every one of you has had a direct impact on an incalculable number of wounded warriors over the last ten years. There are no words to express the depth of gratitude and appreciation for the part you have played.’’

One of the busiest trauma centers in the nation, Ryder opened as the official training center for the Army’s Forward Surgical Teams a month after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. To date, 93 surgical teams – more than 2,300 physicians, physician’s assistants, nurses and soldiers – have rotated through the intensive two-week program, which includes team-building exercises, a mass casualty exercise, and clinical rotations in trauma intensive care and surgical areas.

“We have grown from a series of Powerpoint-based lectures to a nearly lecture-free, mobile curriculum allowing more hands-on, clinically based teamwork building,’’ Garcia noted at the ceremony. “We have developed the most realistic, challenging mass casualty exercise that I have ever seen. We have incorporated the American College of Surgeons’ Advanced Surgical Skills for the Exposure of Trauma course and have held more courses than any other site in the country.’’

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