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Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell

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Carole Trottere
School of Medicine
Phone: (516) 463-7585
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Date: Oct 10, 2012

Multiple Casualty Incident Serves as Unique Training Experience for med Students

Exercise hosted by FDNY at Randall's Island

Since beginning classes in August, first year medical students at the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine have been training as emergency medical technicians, working shifts on North Shore-LIJ ambulances and responding to 911 calls. Their training culminated recently in a Multiple Casualty Incident (MCI) conducted at the FDNY Training Center at Randall’s Island. Students were expected to provide emergency care during several different emergency exercises, which were all followed by full debriefing.

The MCI day was coordinated by the Fire Department of the City of New York at the department’s Training Academy on Randall’s Island, where more than 2,000 fire fighters and EMS personnel are trained each year.

“Mass Casualty Incident simulations like those created at Randall’s Island give our students invaluable experience that will help prepare them for the realities of the practice of medicine and make them better doctors who are more responsive to their patients’ needs,” said Dr. Lawrence Smith, Founding Dean of the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine.

Medical students participated in a simulated subway catastrophe, terrorist bus bombing and car accident. Every student had an opportunity to perform exercises as an EMT and a victim. 

“I feel better prepared after participating in the MCI,” said med student Collin Fuller. “I definitely improved my triage skills and even got to use the Jaws of Life.”

“It was very interesting to see all the different scenarios that the FDNY set up for us,” said med student Erica Robinson. “I gained a lot of great experience in triaging accident victims and learning what to look for following a terrorist attack.”

“Randall's Island is a special event in a very special environment,” said Dr. Thomas Kwiatkowski, Assistant Dean of Education/Simulation and EMS course director.  “It allows students to experience a large-scale disaster, in a near-realistic environment and an opportunity to practice their EMT skills in the rescue, triage and treatment of patients.”