Should Tactical Medics be armed?

Should a tactical medic be armed?

  • Yes

    Votes: 32 76.2%
  • No

    Votes: 10 23.8%

  • Total voters
    42

DrParasite

The fire extinguisher is not just for show
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If they want to carry ET tubes and been all paramedic AF after they qualify and prove precision like i have to, welcome to the team pal. but if you cant perform to the standards we have to I don't want you having a firearm.
and if they can't perform to the standards you have, they have no business being in the hot zone.... or the warm zone.... they should stay in the cold zone, and let the cops bring the injured to them. Maybe not to your standards (esp since I think you said you go above and beyond the requirements), but to the standards that are applied to everyone on the team. This we totally agree on.
Also logically speaking.... wouldn't it be easier to take somebody who's already on the team, and already an EMT, send them to a hospital for a week to master needle decomps, and then have them stay on the team? instead of training somebody all of the tactics, fatal funnels, firearm proficiency, callsigns and signals, and everything else that goes along with a team?
sure.... if you want a poorly trained EMT or paramedic, who does it very rarely, barely trains in EMS, and does EMS on the side when needed (maybe once or twice a year), sure. Nothing against you personally (since you are on the ambulance once a week), but if a cop (or firefighter, or anyone for that matter) isn't on an ambulance on a regular basis, how sharp are his skills? BTW, we have the same issue with career firefighters who have issues taking manual blood pressures reliably, performing accurate patient assessments, or who have never spent more than three ride along shifts in EMT class as an observer actually being with the patient to the ambulance when they go to the hospital...But that's a topic for another day...
I FULLY AGREE there should be paramedics waiting in the cold zone, hell there should probably be multiple ambulances there along with said medics as well. Bottom line is i just don't want my life to get jeopardized because i have to babysit some paramedic that wanted to be cool so he got tactical written on his vest.
Bottom line is I won't want my life to get jeopardized because I'm going into a warm or hot zone with a bunch of armed cops, who are armed for a reason, usually to keep themselves alive (often by taking out the bad guy), but I'm not allowed be carry a firearm despite being exposed to the same threats that they are.
 

TheBestRobert

Forum Ride Along
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Trauma treatment during a fire fight should be limited to massive hemorrhage control. Everyone in the team should be trained in hemorrhage control techniques and equipment, such as applying the tourniquet. The ability to neutralize the threat is more important than advanced medical skills at this stage.
Once the imminent threat has been neutralized, and the casualty in en route to the hospital, then the medic should be performing more advanced treatments such as needle chest decompression, IV or IO, airway, etc.
So yes, the tactical medic should be armed and trained to the level of the other tactical members.
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
Community Leader
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Here the county's team has a paramedic on it. He is armed and went through the same training as the rest of the guys. While most truly time sensitive interventions don't need a paramedic, he takes care of all the team's medical aspects as well. He coordinates their training, works with them on personal injuries, and makes sure their missions factor in medical evac planning.
 

Luno

OG
Premium Member
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I'm sorry, but I Intended for that to be meant within the confines of the military / combat situation. Under the Geneva conventions, etc. if you offensively use a weapon you become a combatant, meaning you can be fired upon by enemy troops. Therefore, shooting back in such situations isn't smart..

Again, not quite accurate... Shooting back in such situations is defensive. As a military medic, you are assigned a weapon for defense of yourself and your patient. ;) Care to correct?
 

Luno

OG
Premium Member
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Interestingly enough, even though every single 68W and 18D I've ever met have always been armed with a rifle and basic ammo load, and have been expected to engage the enemy should they be able to do so....Army Medevac helicopters, the DUSTOFFs, are not armed, something somewhat related to the Laws of Armed Conflict and that they have Red Crosses on them. That means that if a Soldier is critically wounded, but the enemy is still in the area, the DUSTOFF has to wait for an armed escort (usually an AH-64). There's more missions than helicopters, there's not always an Apache on standby ready to roll with the Medevac....so they have to sit and wait if need be. There are those who believe this has led to WIAs turning into KIAs.....
Now the Air Force Pararescue (PJs) helicopters, the PEDROs, do NOT have Red Crosses on them (despite being primarily Medevac birds for the Pararescue Jumpers).....and thus they are armed, often not just with the door guns, but often times an M2 .50 in the rear compartment as well....they do not have to wait on an Apache escort and can jump straight into a potentially hot LZ to evacuate the wounded while still defending themselves

Hmm...actually, I wasn't thinking it when I started typing, but yeah, that little comparison between the Dustoffs and the Pedro's is very relevant to the conversation IMO...

There is a much larger difference between PJs and medevac, firstly that the one is medevac and the other isn't... Now onto the rest, while the medevac helicopter is not armed the crew most definitely is if they are flying in a combat theater. Yes, standing orders were that medevac has an escort... The PJs, their helicopter and their mission is not medevac, they pick up medical evacuation missions, but they are a combat search and rescue asset. Finally, I had to google this one, "M2 in the rear compartment" because for the life of me, I couldn't remember a pavehawk with a rear compartment, and was pretty sure the pavelows were retired. Well, there might be one mounted on the ospreys, but haven't seen it yet... ;)
 

rhstanford

Forum Probie
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Narcan in the presence of Tramadol is well-documented to cause seizures and more rarely status elipticus. It mimics TCAs in a lot of ways, yet also has opioid effects as well. The particular case in question resulted in status elipticus and consequential arrest.
What research are you basing your post on? Just out of curiosity.
 
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CWATT

Forum Lieutenant
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Dr. P as a side note, i genuinely don't know here and i'm asking a question not taking a stab at medics, but what can a paramedic do that an EMT/SWAT/SORT officer with TQ's OPA NPA. We're talking GSW's and Possibly stab wounds. I'm also talking life saving measures, not comfort things. What benefits does having a paramedic give, as opposed to somebody like myself or thousands of others that are an EMT and also happen to be on special response teams.

i think the difference is the job descriptions.... its my job to clear rooms and stack up, and have the elevated chance on having bullets fired at me. It's a medics job to provide healthcare to patients.


Also logically speaking.... wouldn't it be easier to take somebody who's already on the team, and already an EMT, send them to a hospital for a week to master needle decomps, and then have them stay on the team? instead of training somebody all of the tactics, fatal funnels, firearm proficiency, callsigns and signals, and everything else that goes along with a team?


You have a LOT of really good discussion points here. Here in Canada, the federal agency — Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) takes members with previous medical experience and provide them with training in such medical interventions as you’ve listed. It’s their position that current members of the tactical units have the appropriate training and tools for the hazards the role presents.

The problem is that the majority of agencies in Canada who do employ tactical paramedics disagree. The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) utilize Advanced Care Paramedics (ACPs) which are equivalent to EMT-Ps who are employed full-time on a service. The belief being that full-time EMS employment will ensure knowledge and skills proficiency that a clinical rotation in a hospital simply cannot provide.

My personal belief is that if there are going to be paramedics in a tactical unit, they should be full-time tactical members and complete role-specific physical fitness standards and law-enforcement education. However, they should also be routinely working on an EMS service. There are a few ways to achieve this too which offers flexibility.
 

RocketMedic

Californian, Lost in Texas
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I think that, for most needs, it is both more efficient and more effective to train a team for CLS or maybe EMT than it is to have a tactical paramedic.
 

FireDog19

Justifiably Delusional
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Okay, so small town USA here. My entire country really, but due to growing tension and threats we have planned for the worst. Eg. school shooting, county sheriff's office sends a team in with an unarmed TAC Medic to triage and render emergency care while clearing the building. In these situations it has been decided that the TAC Medic is just that a medic and the sole responsibility of the LEOs is to neutralize the threat. A second team will follow to pull victims according to triage tags. I am pro gun, but not in this case, it'll only get in the way.
 

FireDog19

Justifiably Delusional
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Note, in my county we're mostly volunteer fire EMT, paid EMS so while a medic is likely to go in at this point we at pushing to send volunteer EMTs in efforts to have all ambulances running transport.
 

VFlutter

Flight Nurse
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Being armed and actively being involved in the tactical aspect of the situation are two different things. These situations are fluid and I for one would not want to be unarmed. Yes carrying a long gun is unnecessary and probably will get in the way but no reason they shouldn't have a sidearm just incase be it your normal CCW or whatever.



Oh and AFSOC Ospreys' have .50s :cool:
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06Unltd

Forum Ride Along
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I suppose my thought is if the Tactical Medic is required to wear body arnour due to risk of being shot, I believe having the ability to protect ones self with the same force is only appropriate. Thoughts?

I concur
 

RocketMedic

Californian, Lost in Texas
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I reckon a Colt SAA or 1911 would be a good idea.
 
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