RENO, NV - The actors in this drill surely made it look realistic.
“Help me, I'm burning,” moaned one victim.
The scenario: A lab explosion at a local middle school has many students injured.
How emergency crews respond is observed by these middle school students interested in growing up to be doctors, nurses, paramedics, even dieticians.
“I want to help people,” says Mykel Miller, an 11-year-old on why he was participating this week.
Helping get the patients to the hospital so they have the best chance of survival is what REMSA crews hope to teach the kids enrolled in the Health Care Heroes program.
Organized by Kids University, the camp offers a first-hand view of medical care.
In this case, the students learned what triage means.
“The black would be probably dead people. The red is they need to get to the hospital the fastest and the yellow is people who need help but not as much,” said Taylor Jensen, another 11-year-old describing why the tarps laid on the lawn were different colors.
Ambulances were lined up to show that some patients could be combined for their trip to the hospital.
At the end of the exercise, the students were debriefed about what happened, and if they had any questions.
The program hopes to get students excited about the medical field.
It could even change some students' minds.
“I actually want to be a marine biologist, but a doctor is one of them too, its actually pretty cool,” said 10-year-old Haley McPhail on what she wants to be when she grows up.
As the mass casualty incident finished on the grass, there are still plenty more exercises the kids can look forward to this week, such as a mock crime scene where forensic crews will demonstrate how they use science to solve crimes.
Five years ago, Health Care Heroes only had 8 students, but over the last couple of years, it's been maxed out at 25 students.