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What is a Secondary Aid Man? (Combat Medic) - Discussion

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  • What is a Secondary Aid Man? (Combat Medic) - Discussion

    Good afternoon,

    Thought I'd bail out of the office a little early today and have some vitamin water while I draft up this post from my favourite home-away-from-home.

    So, first off, I have to state that my mind has changed on this topic. You can blame DMZ Scout lol. You see, previously I was thinking of the true medic which is not a regular member of a fire team or a regular attachment to a squad. This kind of specialty role is normally a platoon level asset which the PL may attach to any unit they see fit. This medic is the Primary Aid as I understand. Scout may correct me & I won't be butt hurt.

    There is in each team a Secondary Aid man. This is the one that a leader will designate as the one who will be responsible to ensure that the rest of the team is combat effective with regards to their required treatments.

    The reason this designation is so important is so that everyone in the team should know that if/when we suffer a casualty:
    • who is going to keep their guns up and firing
    • who is going to be monitoring for anyone who needs first aid while they fight
    • who is going to need extra security if they are attending to first aid
    Now when Scout did up the latest squad organization for the H&M mission I did see the logic in this approach. In fact, I may be dead wrong and that the squads primary is the Combat Medic and then in each fire team, that leader designates a secondary. That also makes great sense to me.

    This role is largely designated the job of attending to wounded so that there is no question as to who should do what when the shots at us hit their mark. It's not supposed to be like a Pilot (who is responsible for the aircraft) or an Explosive Specialist (who must stay safe to attend to the destruction of the primary objective). It's a fluid designation so that when the chaos of battle or fog of war weighs heavy on a team in combat, there is an established order.

    I think we need to pay attention these terms, and incorporate this concept a little deeper, and then we might see some different results when we find ourselves ambushed or overwhelmed.

    How many of you have seen this Primary and Secondary aid role designated....and then followed in our games?
    |TG189| Unkl
    ArmA 3 Admin
    189th Infantry Brigade Member
    Thank You To our Supporting Members -
    "Place your playable units and do your tactical barbie" - Roque_THE_GAMER

  • #2
    I think I've seen it followed more so with H&M. Guys see how valuable a medic is during an Op. It's nice to see it utilized a lot more as well because some people really enjoy that role.


    • #3
      Personally, I really enjoy the ACE medical system and almost always kit up as the offhand medic. Any slotted role can be an offhand medic just by throwing in extra med supplies. So far it's made a big difference in at least a few of the missions I've been part of, sometimes being the difference between a wipe and victory. The biggest thing it has pointed out to me though, is that overall, our riflemen aren't all carrying enough med supplies. When I make a kit, the first thing I always do is empty the uniform and put in 20 x bandages, 5 x epi pen, 15 x morphine, and at least 2000ml blood in the backpack. For me that's bare minimum of medical supplies. If every single person carried that, then there wouldn't need to be a designated secondary aid man, just good radio calls when somebody goes down.

      I strongly believe that every squad member should be a secondary aid man, it takes a little more diligence in radio calls, a little more awareness to adjust security, and a little more flexibility. With all that though, casualties are back up quicker, we're back in the fight faster, and overall more effective, not even going into the benefits during a mass cas event.


      • #4
        I agree, only IF (like you said) not everyone has rifles pointed at the ground. That is still something I see. I find myself giving out that reminder. "Hey guys, guns up. Pull security."

        Side note: it's natural to want to look at something happening Ie: a car accident on the highway where everyone slows down to look and see what happened.


        • #5
          Yes! Great post, I think I am going to start doing this more often, designating aid men.

          Current ARMA Development Project: No Current Project

          "An infantryman needs a leader to be the standard against which he can judge all soldiers."

          Friend of |TG| Chief


          • #6

            Red its not just about having enough medical gear in the field, every player should have some extra meds.

            its about designating ahead of time who will not be pulling security but instead be the extra man to "help the medic."

            also just so yall are tracking my thoughts here. I use the words "help the medic" intentionally. secondary aid man isnt just another medic treating wounded. its the secondary aids role to assist the primary.

            secondary aid man jobs would/could be
            -carrying extra med gear
            -dragging wounded
            -checking to see if anyone was missed
            -double teaming bandages with primary for the critically wounded
            -redundancy if primary gets KIA or disconnects

            you of course will still have to use good coms and adjust security. the goal being to get everyone up ASAP will require lead making good judgment assessing and deciding how much security/help the medics will need to get the team up again.

            an examples of bad secondary aids would be people like ARs or DMRs maybe even GLs... my thoughts being lets keep the big casualty producing weapons looking out.

            good discussion lets keep it going.


            • #7
              So sturdyguns you got me to thinking about scenarios here.

              Who calls the medical shots in a squad? SL or squad medic? If the SL is up and helping with the fight, should the medic be automatically surveying the squad for injury. If injury occurs, should the medic be the one to decide the casualty response. Is the wounded down in front of the firing line? Is there room to work on them where they are? If not, what next? Primary aid, go pull wounded to me? Is that the SL's call at this point or the medics call? Should the medic simply move forward to work on the wounded at that point or is there some unspoken judgement agreement between SL and medic. When does the primary aid man get called into assist and whose call is it?

              I enjoy where this conversation is going.

              Current ARMA Development Project: No Current Project

              "An infantryman needs a leader to be the standard against which he can judge all soldiers."

              Friend of |TG| Chief


              • #8
                I think that should be in the CO/SQL brief before we step off.

                If there is a mass cas and/or lead goes down, medic should take over as far as handling wounded.

                Do we have any insite as to how that real world situation is handled? Just to get a base line maybe?


                • #9
                  I would argue the medic calls the medical shots in any situation. The SL obviously will need to be aware of or informed of combat casualties, but ultimately it is up to the medic to decided how they want to go about responding. If the casualties can be treated on the spot then so be it, but if they need to be moved either the medic can, or if too dangerous, then the medic can call anyone in the squad to retrieve the casualty. Meanwhile the rest of the team either needs to stay on task or keeping security until given the all clear from the medic. Any additional casualties that should arise should be reported to the medic who will either ask for movement or give instruction to stabilize. I don't think the a designated assistant should be needed unless the group is large or extended combat is expected(more casualties). in the case of a mass cas from say an IED then all bets are generally off as the initial treatment takes precedence over even security. Once most of the team is stable then someone can pull security, but for that first minute it should be everyone helps stop the bleeding. I know that is counter to everything, but i believe that is how it should be. If the bleeding is stopped then the Medic can focus on the blood transfusions and getting people back up and not waste time bandaging.

                  I have noticed a few times where someone is down and there will be 3 non-medics standing around trying to bandage them up while the medic is trying to catch up. or where several people pile up on one person without looking around to verify the number of casualties. For example:
                  This is a clip from last weeks video i made of the LB crash. Just pause it at 4:42-4:43 and see if you can notice what i'm looking at. To the left is Dimitrius, one of the downed pilot's who at this point had been down for over a minute, to the right is someone who was downed after the fact when the second vic arrived. Now i wasn't sure who the medic was or anything if there even was one, but i noticed 2 people standing above the right body and no one notices the left for another 3 minutes. Even after several radio calls and local calls for assistance as i did not have enough supplies to handle the situation, I have to turn to the 3 standing to the right(one just picked up) talking and spell it out slowly that there is one more down person and that he is critical and is located 3 feet behind them. Anyways that side rant is over.


                  • #10

                    (edit) you can skip this whole post as it basically boils down to PROBLEM SOLVING
                    sure thing dimi i can expand upon this a little.

                    do not make the mistake of trying to be overly consistent.
                    simply waiting for orders is not always the right thing to do.

                    look guys anyone thats played with me for a while has heard me say "everyone needs to be a thinker" when we play at TG

                    so lets take the mindsets of "everyone needs to be a thinker" and combine that with "know your role"

                    now lets apply these mindsets to a mas casualty event.
                    here is the hypothetical:
                    a four man fire team get hit by an enemy patrol
                    our team killed 2 dudes and are not taking fire anymore
                    FTL and primary aid are both down
                    secondary aid and the AR survived

                    KNOW YOUR ROLE:
                    -using the know your role mindset the AR is pulling security without having to be told, hes not waiting for someone to tell him what to do. he knows his job already and coms are kept clear to send next contact report.
                    -our secondary aid is doing his role treating the wounded. deciding who needs to be brought up first.
                    EVERYONE NEEDS TO BE A THINKER:
                    -the AR knows enemy patrols are usually 6-8 strong so being a thinking player he popped smoke to add some concealment for his team. this is the key part he didnt pop smoke just because we took a casualty and he wasn't commanded to pop smoke. he thought it out. he knew his role was to cover the team and thought the smoke would help him do his job.
                    -our secondary aid decides to stabilize both then gives 2L blood to the more critically injured player while the pops epi and morphine for the other.
                    end hypothetical.

                    so what im getting at is lets allow every players to be flexible and use their minds and make decisions.
                    strictly waiting to be told to do something is not fun and its not teamwork. on top of all that its slow and it gets players killed and frustrated.

                    its my view that embracing some applicable mindsets is far more helpful. rather than trying to break down the spheres of control for any givin problem scenario. if they players know their role they can then think through his own part in the bigger problem.
                    -primary and secondary aids do casualties
                    -ARs and DMRs do security
                    -leads watch it all go down and command adjustments when they see a problem

                    okay before i go on i feel i have to clarify something here as its always and recently has been an issue surrounding leading and commanding.
                    i see how saying something like "be a thinker" and "dont wait for orders" can be read as you dont need to follow lead or ask lead as long as you thought it through. that not the case and would not be welcomed behavior.

                    a better clarification of "be a thinker" is "be a thinker in your role"

                    sorry to get derailed but when we talk about roles and predetermining responsibility it had to be brought up what a role is and how players should think and solve problems within there roles responsibility.
                    when everyone does their job a squad can ride the chaos.


                    • #11
                      @wilco where is rest of the video?

                      it could be valuable to look and see what that particular firefight ended and how long it took to get dimi up

                      also are you not communicating or did it simply stop recording your voice after you patched yourself up?


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by sturdy_guns View Post
                        @wilco where is rest of the video?

                        it could be valuable to look and see what that particular firefight ended and how long it took to get dimi up

                        also are you not communicating or did it simply stop recording your voice after you patched yourself up?
                        i don't have voice capture running on local which given the proximity was how i was talking most of the time on the ground. It picks up some of my radio transmits but not well. Shadowplay isn't the best, but with it always running it helps me grab the last 7 minutes. My TS dropped out at one point for about a minute, and that probably blocked my responses over radio. i tried ingame Von, but I think ACE broke my transmit key '~'on that too. The actual firefight ended about where my video cuts out, most of the fire at that point was unreturned

                        The point i was trying to make before i got off track was that there was stacking on 1 downed by more than one person doing medical with no checks in to the surrounding areas for more casualties. With ACE there is no notification of down players(i prefer this) and the dead can't talk or type so checking your buddies is even more important than ever.


                        • #13
                          We used to have a primary and secondary aid&litter men assigned during patrols in addition to a Squad Medic. The Squad Medic was the man who would administer and direct aid if a casualty was sustained. This guy had the advanced training and the big bag of supplies. The primary and secondary aidmen were Infantry guys with guns who were trained in combat lifesaving techniques that were just the dudes assigned a head of time to be the extra set of hands for the doc. Also, you needed to be prepared to assign men to carry wounded if need be.

                          The gist is, the medic is the man who does the aid. In the interest of preparation for the unexpected, additional dudes are designated a head of time to provide assistance. These guys were trained to give IV's for example. BTW, I am talking 22-24 years ago, so I am sure things might be different current time.

                          Think failing to plan is planning to fail. If you don't have a plan then you are just MSU as you go. A plan is used as a base to deviate from depending of situation.

                          As far as we should be concerned. If there is a medic slot in the mission, and someone takes it, then that is the dude who should be providing aid. Everyone else should be taking a knee and providing security. The medic should be the one who requests help from other to say, provide bandages to stop bleeding or assist during a mass cas. The squad leader should have directed his team leaders prior to departing friendly lines to designate a aidman from each fire team to be the dude that falls out when called for to assist the Medic. The Medic should be calling the shots as to providing the care. If the medic goes down, the primary aidman is up, if he is down, the secondary man is up. The medic carries the bulk of the supplies and the primary and secondary dudes carry a little more than the average rifleman in the squad.

                          The ACE medical system requires preplanned thought and logistics. Medical could be compared to a 240 MG team. In most cases, t takes more than one dude to be effective.

                          I do know this mature tactical gamers. . . if there is a medic role, than that is the guy who should be relied on for aid and anyone else providing aid should only be doing if. . the medic is down, the medic asks for help, or the you are instructed to do so be the SL or TL. Doing so otherwise is not encouraging teamwork, good communication and could be compared to lone wolfing, none of which are characteristics of being a mature tactical gamer.

                          Oh, and obviously, of course, if noone took the medic role. lol




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