Our senior nursing class went to Mascatatuck Urban Training Center (MUTC) in order to learn how to triage victims in mass casualty situations. We focused on a form of triage called START triage. START stands for “simple triage and rapid treatment”. This type of triage is indeed simple, as the only factors assessed are the ability to walk, respiratory rate, capillary refill, and mental status. By properly assessing victims, we can efficiently identify who needs priority treatment and who can wait to receive medical attention.
We each took turns playing the roles of rescuers and victims so that we were able to get a feel for what both parties experience during these terrifying scenarios. This was such an incredible learning opportunity that opened our eyes to the unpredictable and difficult nature of this area of healthcare. First responders do not always know what to expect when they arrive on the scene, but they must always be perseverant, level-headed, quick to make decisions, and brave. Not only did I gain respect for those who are the first to respond and to perform START triage in emergencies, but I also gained an interest in someday responding to emergency situations by utilizing the skills I acquired at MUTC.