America's Army News

AMERICA’S ARMY MEDIC TRAINING HELPS SAVE A LIFE

Silver Spring, MD (January 17, 2008) – A longtime America’s Army player became a first responder at a tragic car accident last November by employing life saving techniques he learned by playing the America’s Army game. Twenty-eight year old Paxton Galvanek was able to evaluate and treat the victims at the scene. Paxton credited the combat medic training he completed in the popular America’s Army online PC game with teaching him the critical skills he needed to react appropriately in this crisis situation. This is the second time an America’s Army player has reported successfully using medical skills learned through playing the game to respond in a life-threatening situation. In order to assume the role of combat medic in the America’s Army game, players must go through virtual medical training classes based on the actual training that real Soldiers receive. The creators of America’s Army developed the training scenarios with young adults in mind, recognizing their need to be able to respond in emergency situations. Through the game, players learn to evaluate and prioritize casualties, control bleeding, recognize and treat shock, and administer aid when victims are not breathing. "Because of the training he received in America’s Army’s virtual classroom, Mr. Galvanek had mastered the basics of first aid and had the confidence to take appropriate action when others might do nothing. He took the initiative to assess the situation, prioritize actions and apply the correct procedures," said Colonel Casey Wardynski, America’s Army Project Director. "Paxton is a true hero. We are pleased to have played a role in providing the lifesaving training that he employed so successfully at the scene." After the incident, Galvanek wrote the America’s Army team to thank them for including the medical training in the game. He said, "I have received no prior medical training and can honestly say that because of the training and presentations within America’s Army, I was able to help and possibly save the injured men. As I look back on the events of that day, the training that I received in the America’s Army video game keeps coming to mind." "I remember vividly in section four of the game’s medic training, during the field medic scenarios, I had to evaluate the situation and place priority on the more critically wounded. In the case of this accident, I evaluated the situation and placed priority on the driver of the car who had missing fingers. I then recalled that in section two of the medic training, I learned about controlled bleeding. I noticed that the wounded man had severe bleeding that he could not control. I used a towel as a dressing and asked the man to hold the towel on his wound and to raise his hand above his head to lessen the blood flow which allowed me to evaluate his other injuries which included a cut on his head," said Galvanek. Galvanek’s Story:On November 23, 2007, Galvanek was driving West-bound on I-40 in North Carolina with his family. About 25 miles south of Raleigh he witnessed an SUV on the east-bound lanes lose control of the vehicle and flip about five times. While his wife called 911, he stopped his vehicle and ran across the highway to the scene of the accident. Assuming the role of first responder, he quickly assessed the situation and found two victims in the smoking vehicle. Needing to extract them quickly, he helped the passenger out of the truck and noticed he had minor cuts and injuries. He told the man to stay clear of the smoking car and quickly went to the driver’s side where he located a wounded man. He pulled the driver to safety on the side of the road. Galvanek immediately noticed the man had lost two fingers in the accident and was bleeding profusely. The victim had also suffered head trauma. Galvanek located a towel, put pressure on the man’s hand, and instructed him to sit down and elevate his hand above his head while pressing the towel against his lost fingers. Galvanek then attended to his head cut and determined that injury was not as serious as his hand. Roughly five minutes later, an Army Soldier in plain clothing arrived on the scene of the accident and informed Galvanek that he was medically trained and could take over until the paramedics arrived. He looked over the injured men and told Galvanek that he had done a great job. Once the Soldier assured Galvanek that the two men were in stable condition and there was nothing more he could do to assist until the paramedics arrived, Galvanek left the scene and continued on his journey.