NI medics save lives at trauma centre

Published Wednesday, 06 March 2013
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More than 30 medics from Northern Ireland are working on the frontline at a warzone hospital in Afghanistan which, with a 98% survival rate, is the world's best trauma centre.

The doctors and nurses are part of a team of people at Camp Bastion Hospital, who normally work in the NHS.

But instead, during their time with the Army, they are helping to man the largest army hospital in the warzone.

Paul Clark spent a day at the hospital, where he witnessed seven injured service men and women brought through the front doors in a thirty-minute period.

"[It] might tax some hospitals but actually for us we have eight trauma bays, four operating tables, actually when we got the people in it all went very well," Medical Director Paul Parker explained.

The hospital is linked with a centre in Birmingham which can instantly see the medical scans and information that are taken at Camp Bastion, so if patients are transported home a medical team there will have a treatment plan ready for them.

The Territorial Army and regular Army work side by side at the hospital to aid soldier's recovery.

"I think you can look round this hospital you can't tell who is territorial and who is regular, we all work together," Col Parker added.

"Yes we joke about things like Tuesday night drill halls and stuff but actually it is two armies together as well."

Northern Irish volunteer at the Field hospital, Col Alan Black says they play a crucial role in operations there.

He said: "The important question to ask is not of me but really of the casualties, do they notice any difference in between a reservist and a regular soldier officer?

"The answer is going to be no they don't, what they are interested in is optimal level of medical care and that is what they get."

© UTV News
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