Morgan police and medics practice Active Shooter Training Drill

Staff Written Community, Featured

By Quinn Rafferty

staff writer 

EMS Education Program, Adaptive Training, held a training session at the old Morgan Memorial Hospital building this past Friday to fuse together police enforcement and EMT training.

Cofounders Crystal Shelnutt and Ben Ewing began Adaptive Training in 2017 with the goal to save more lives when it comes to intentional violent incidences. 

Shelnutt and Ewing have a combined 45 years of experience in EMS. Shelnutt served as a Program Chair for EMS Education at a technical college before launching Adaptive Training. Ewing has served as a line paramedic, an educator and as an EMS department training officer. Together, they teach courses that include First Responder, EMT, TECC, and many American Heart Association CPR and Advanced classes.

The old Morgan Memorial Hospital building was the ideal location as a training site for a course called “Tactical Emergency Casualty Care” (TECC). This course is designed for EMTs and Paramedics to learn more about how to respond to an intentional violence incident.  Over a span of two days, the course teaches life-saving trauma skills including triage, patient assessment and extraction, wound packing, and tourniquet use under various circumstances in their surroundings. The old hospital building allowed for multiple scenarios with the opportunity to create new and realistic challenges with each variation.

Day two of TECC includes realistic scenarios for the EMTs and Paramedics to navigate, employing trauma skills and critical thinking to safely rescue and save the lives of victims of an active killer event. 

“The goal is simply to save more lives,” said Shelnutt.

 The course is funded through a grant from the Northeast Georgia Regional Trauma Advisory Council (RTAC), and in adherence to the guidelines set forth by the National Committee on Tactical Emergency Casualty Care. Participants were selected by their EMS directors within the Region. 20 seats are available for licensed EMS personnel in each course.

“The vision of TECC is to implement practices during active threat events in civilian practice. Historically, EMTs and Paramedics were taught to never enter a scene if it’s not safe. Before EMS crews were allowed access to victims, law enforcement would first eliminate threats and completely secure the scene. What we have learned by studying the many civilian active shooting events in recent years, is that if we leave our EMS crews outside to wait for all threats to be controlled by law enforcement, many victims may die from what should have been survivable injuries,” said Shelnutt. 

To help the course come alive, members of the Morgan County High School Drama Club participated as victims and cosmetology students assisted in dressing the victims by creating realistic wounds.

“All of public safety dreads the day we are called to respond to this situation and we hope we never see it in our communities. But we are increasingly aware that our communities are not immune, no community is,” said Shelnutt.

The class’ success comes from the support of Region 10 EMS and the passionate instructors who skillfully share their experience and knowledge. Including Shelnutt and Ewing, instructors for this course include Clark Sparrow, Tim Rousseau, Jennifer Carter, Erik Drahms, and Mike Garner.  

“I’m very proud to teach with such a distinguished group of military, law enforcement, and EMS professionals,” said Shelnutt.

This was the 4th class taught by Adaptive Training in Region 10. Previous training locations include Athens, Jefferson, and Danielsville.

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