Mock drill tests responders

Christus Ochsner St. Patrick had its mass casualty incident drill Tuesday, responding to a mock plane crash and fire at the Lake Charles Regional Airport.

Working alongside several state and local agencies, first responders and hospital staff used the Louisiana Emergency Response Network to treat injured passengers. A city transit bus brought several patients in full wound makeup to St. Patrick Hospital for treatment. Staff members wore a vest or jacket with a brightly-colored label that showed their official hospital title.

Scott Kyle, Christus regional manager of emergency management, said they strategically organize treatment plans with Louisiana Emergency Response Network officials, instead of throwing them together “haphazardly.” LERN personnel can provide first responders with up-to-date resources and route injured patients to the best facility for treatment.

Candice Thibodeaux, Christus clinical director of emergency services, said many volunteers rush to the aid of mass casualty victims. During a chaotic scenario, all responders have to be focused, she said.

“With the incidents of mass shootings and things that can happen with the petrochemical plants in the area, it’s very important for us to drill an influx of patients to see how far we can be taxed,” Thibodeaux said.

The drill brought in 20 patients to the emergency room within the hour, far more than the usual three to four patients an hour. Kyle said a mass casualty incident is defined as “one more patient than you can handle.”

Responders to a mass casualty incident also have to consider other circumstances, including the number of ER beds, staffing and whether a hospital is a trauma center, Kyle said. Because none of Southwest Louisiana’s hospitals are official trauma centers, Thibodeaux said drills are needed to make sure services are organized and patients are treated quickly.

“We must make sure that everyone, from our emergency department to our surgery department to outpatient, can function, literally, taxed to the max,” she said.

SportsPlus

McNeese Sports

Davey earns first preseason honor

Local News

High insurance premiums affect home-buying decisions

Business

Jeff Davis getting two new economic districts

Local News

UPDATE: Motive of man who tried to assassinate Trump remains elusive

Local News

Federal judge dismisses Trump classified documents case over concerns with prosecutor’s appointment

McNeese Sports

Former Cowboy MacIntyre wins again

Local News

UPDATE: Man killed at Trump rally ‘died a hero’

Local News

UPDATE: Fire chief who died at Trump rally used his body to shield others

Local News

UPDATE: Trump calls for unity after assassination attempt

Local News

Iowa Mayor Neal Watkins speaks about effort to oust him from office

Business

Names in the News: People shaping the future of Lake Area business

Local News

UPDATE: Trump says bullet pierced right ear

Local News

UPDATE: Shooting at Trump rally being investigated as assassination attempt

Local News

UPDATE: Trump ‘fine’ after being whisked off stage

Local News

Trump rushed off stage by Secret Service as bangs heard at Pennsylvania rally

Local News

Unrestrained driver, passenger killed in Beauregard crash

Local News

School Board gives Van Metre four-year contract

Jim Beam

Jim Beam column:Traffic cameras are targeted

Crime

UPDATE: Victim identified in Sulphur officer-involved shooting

Local News

Area medical facilities have treated dozens for heat-related illnesses

McNeese Sports

SLC releases basketball schedules

life

SW La. nightlife calendar: There’s always something to do

life

Calcasieu SerialFest flying high with tribute to superheroes

Crime

7/12: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff announces arrest list