Ma­jor’s US trip is first of its kind

Macclesfield Express - - BARLOW’S BRIEF - ALEX HIB­BERT

AN army re­servist swapped his day job as a spe­cial­ist in emer­gency medicine to train along­side the US Navy in Cal­i­for­nia. Ma­jor Matt Lynch, who works at Mac­cles­field Dis­trict Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal, also serves with 208 Field Hos­pi­tal.

He was part of a group of 100 sol­diers from the reg­i­ment that trav­elled to Camp Pendleton in San Diego, where – for the first time ever – Bri­tish medics were put through their paces by their US coun­ter­parts.

Speak­ing after the train­ing Matt, 47, who served in Afghanistan twice dur­ing his seven years with the Army re­serve, said his time in Cal­i­for­nia had been in­valu­able.

He said: “Un­like civil­ian medics, Army medics must know how to build their own hos­pi­tal from scratch.

“So we were build­ing a tem­po­rary tented hos­pi­tal which we would use as our first med­i­cal fa­cil­ity in any de­ploy­ment.

“It was good. The weather was bet­ter than home, and it’s also good to use another na­tion’s kit be­cause it’s likely that on any fu­ture de­ploy­ment we may end up us­ing it for real.

“My friends and fam­ily were a lit­tle bit jeal­ous I was in Cal­i­for­nia, they thought it was all beaches and sun­shine – not re­al­is­ing we were wear­ing hard hats, build­ing a hos­pi­tal in the blaz­ing sun.”

After the de­mands of Camp Pendleton Matt took part in kayak­ing, climb­ing and horse-rid­ing in Ne­vada’s Spring Moun­tains and a camp­ing and trekking ex­pe­di­tion into the Grand Canyon.

●● Re­servist Ma­jor Matt Lynch was among the first ever to be trained by US Army medics

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