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Tornado Hits MCC--students treat victims

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Press Release

March 13, 2014 at 9:34 AM

Fort Morgan, CO. 03/13/14.  For the second year, the Morgan Community College (MCC) Health ScienceImage: Mock patient Jerod Dewey (Brush), a first year Radiology Technology student, is taken on a gurney by EMS students Alyssa Johnson (Wiggins), Jose Chacon (Brush), and Kaylie Hahn (Ft. Morgan). Division hosted a multi-discipline training exercise focused on emergency response. This year the exercise simulated the aftermath of a tornado. “A mock scenario such as this offers an opportunity for our students to work together during an ‘emergency’ as it pertains to assessing, transporting and treating victims of a disaster,” says EMS instructor Don Enninga.

Students from five disciplines, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Radiology Technology, Physical Therapy Assistant, Nursing, and Health Science Technology, participated in the exercise either as patients, responders, health care providers, bystanders or observers.

“Participation allowed our students to utilize their education and skills in a non-threatening, learning environment,” notes Enninga.

The “victims” were all MCC students enrolled in the health care program. Instructions were given on how to realistically portray a patient with their assigned injury. Additionally, moulage (make up to simulate injuries) was applied to the “actors” to give the incident more of a realistic look, allowing participants a better feel for how an actual patient would look and act.

Image: MCC nursing students Jason Quellhorst (Brush) and Annishia Eskew (Brush) treat “tornado victim” Brandon Burhing (Brush), a second year Health Science Technology student.Students assessed a victim with multiple trauma complaints, as well as “walk-in” patients with minor injuries, concussion, and chest pain due to the stress of the incident. Students used MCC’s training ambulance, stationed a fictional ER in one of the campus’ nursing labs, and a recovery room for physical therapy. 

“It was more than just talking about it in class, seeing a video, or other more sedentary activities,” says Enninga. “Students were quite enthused with the training; some were surprised at how long it took to assess and treat a patient in real-time.”

Morgan Community College is now registering for summer semester. If you are considering a career in the health or medical care industry, contact MCC Student Advisor Gwen Steffen at (970) 542-3224 for more information on the programs offered on campus and online, or visit to enroll and apply for financial aid.