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News | March 16, 2022

Maroon Surge 22 tests LRMC, partners’ readiness

By John Ciccarelli

To build readiness and interoperability with strategic partners, Landstuhl Regional Medical Center (LRMC) conducted Maroon Surge 22, a pre-planned Mass Casualty (MASCAL) emergency response training exercise, on March 10. It was the first exercise of its kind at LRMC since 2019, due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.

U.S. Army Col. Andrew Landers, LRMC commander, said the exercise allows LRMC to meet The Joint Commission’s training requirements for emergency management and provides a platform to build lasting relationships with our strategic partners.

“Additionally, the exercise allows us to demonstrate our commitment to maintaining a readiness posture in support of the Joint Warfighter,” he said.

The MASCAL exercise involved more than 200 participants, with simulated patient evacuations, transport, and treatment. The scenario centered on a large vehicle rollover with nearly two dozen casualties who required immediate on-site medical treatment, evacuation and hospital care.
Participants used LRMC’s Emergency Operations Center to manage medical assets and partners, including German emergency responders and medical personnel from nearby medical facilities.

Capabilities of LRMC medical assets were observed by the Multinational Medical Coordination Centre/European Medical Command of the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) Medical Service and the German Red Cross.
The exercise helps increase collaboration between the U.S. and its partners, while providing response and readiness opportunities.

“For the LRMC staff, seeing how we integrate with our host nation partners is a great opportunity for the young medics,” said Lt. Col. Akpan Ekerette, LRMC director of Readiness and Training. “As a medical center we have to be ready to care for the joint warfighter and support our NATO partners, providing compassionate and high-quality care.”

LRMC’s recent response during Operation Allies Refuge and Operation Allies Welcome – the U.S. military withdrawal and evacuation of eligible Afghans from Afghanistan – presented the Military Treatment Facility (MTF) with opportunities for partnering with host nation medical facilities.

Master Sgt. Eric Holman, LRMC noncommissioned officer in charge for Readiness and Integration, said that real-world military operations like these have changed the way LRMC conducts its training.

“It gets us thinking about the next piece of the puzzle that is bigger than us, and it helps us understand that we are all connected,” Holman said. “We cannot operate in a bubble, we have to take off our specific hats and understand that what we are going to do has an impact.”
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