TriHealth adds active shooter training for emergency workers

TriHealth adds active shooter training for emergency workers (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Three of the 11 people hurt in the attack at Ohio State were still in the hospital Tuesday, November 29.

But those who have been released have high praise for emergency medicine workers cared for them. Hospitals in the Tri-State area say they, too, train for those kinds of emergencies.

The team at TriHealth has added a new level of security training to its medical training. Local 12 News met up with a mom who works in their emergency room who has even more empathy for those who were in those really scary situations.

Managing the team in the hospital emergency room was just part of Wendy Walters job each day. Monday, she got a taste of what it was like to be on the other side of that team when violence erupted on the campus of Ohio State University.

Her son Jacob is a second year engineering student at OSU. Right in the middle of the chaos was a big sigh of relief when Walters got a text that said he was hiding in a classroom that was locked and at that point he was safe.

The team at TriHealth became her quiet support, they are all mass casualty trained and say they are ready should multiple people with multiple injuries arrive.

Walters said, “We will set up different areas of the hospital based on the injuries, they come in as a red, yellow, green.

That training goes beyond just what people would need for medical care for triage, for calling in additional staff it actually takes a closer look at what would happen if an active shooter was still on the scene nearby or that may be a danger still to others.

Eugene Duvelius, TriHealth corporate security, said, “We put everybody through live scenarios with their soft pistols so they get a feel of what' it's like to get shot back at.”

When Wendy got the text from her son, “They didn't know at that time that there was not a shooter, the gunshot that they were hearing was the police officer shooting the suspect.”

So Duvelius says they prepare at the hospital that those who arrive might still be under attack. That means they monitor and secure every entrance and area.

“We go on to a restricted access right away if not a lockdown depending on what those situations are,” he shared.

Wendy says she is grateful her son is okay and has even more understanding of the emotional impact those in her care often feel when they arrive.

The active shooter training is done once a year; they certainly hope it's never needed. They do incorporate this with several other hospitals in the area. The health collaborative has an emergency plan for the city and all area emergency rooms are part of handling mass casualty care.

Patients are transported based on injury levels quite often. So part of that plan is triage in the field, to get them to the place with the right kind of care is available.

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