Rocky Vista University (RVU) was honored by the Town of Parker and Mayor Mike Waid during a special presentation for “contributions to the safety of [the Parker] community through the sharing of resources, a commitment to emergency preparedness, and for a dedication” to training first responders. Clinton E. Adams, DO, FACHE, President and CEO of RVU, and Thomas N. Told, DO, FACOFP dist., Dean of RVUCOM and Vice President of Academic Affairs, accepted the special award for RVU’s significant contributions to South Metro Fire Rescue’s (SMFR) mass casualty drills. Anthony J. LaPorta, MD, FACS, Course Director of Military Track, who was not present, was also recognized for his exemplary services.
As part of its ongoing partnership with SMFR, RVU participated in a variety of simulation drills to train Parker’s local emergency responders for worst-case scenarios. Most recently, RVU provided military training, equipment, and other resources to support a nine-day active shooter/mass casualty drill. Training included the use of the Cut Suit® – a human-worn body suit that simulates realistic and severe trauma injuries – and a Perimortem Cesarean Delivery (PMCD) procedure on a pregnant “victim” with a gunshot wound to the abdomen.
RVU students, faculty, and staff also provided their expertise both at the site of the simulated emergency and in the Emergency Rooms and Operating Rooms at nearby hospitals. The drill helped to develop best practices for the participating hospitals and trained close to 1,000 first responders, medical personnel, and community members.
“The event is absolutely amazing,” said Mayor Waid during the award presentation. “This is cutting edge training happening right here in Parker, Colorado, and specifically with our first responders and law enforcement agencies. If we have an active shooter situation, we will be well-prepared.”
RVU has also partnered with SMFR on numerous research projects, such as researching the effects of stress on first responders through the collection of real-time biometric data during a past drill. A second research project connected biometric data to software that continuously monitors patient conditions to enhance patient care in the OR. Paramedics with SMFR also tested this software at Swedish Medical Center during a drill to demonstrate the efficiency of allocating OR resources to the most severely injured patients in an emergency situation.
“RVU has gone above and beyond any reasonable expectation of good will as a community neighbor,” said Ryan Shelton, Training Lieutenant with SMFR, who nominated RVU to receive the award. “This is because of the belief and shared value of the importance of bringing this cutting edge training to our local responder community to prepare for the worst.”