A medical services technician stationed at Eglin Air Force Base has been recognized as a Trusted Care Hero.
Senior Airman David McKiver, 96th Surgical Operations Squadron, was selected for the recognition due to his work ethic and quick responsive actions to provide ‘Trusted Care Anywhere.’
‘Trusted Care Anywhere’ is the Air Force Medical Service’s ‘words for their Airmen to live by’. It’s a state of utmost readiness and reliability when they provide mission support or health services, according to AFMS.
McKiver’s contribution to the slogan was in health services through his efforts in the arrangement of Eglin’s catheterization lab equipment and recovery area to streamline the patient check-in and recovery process. This re-configuration helped discharge 499 patients an hour faster and saved $200,000 in nursing hours. In addition, he stabilized 36 post-operative patients with a high risk of possible life-threatening complications.
According to the Savannah, Georgia native, his job is to stabilize and bring unconscious post-operative patients’ systems back to normal conditions while under the nurses’ care. Part of those duties include assessing patients’ vital signs and checking surgical locations for drainage or leakage.
“When patients come back to the recovery area, monitoring is key to ensure their arteries accept the procedure they underwent,” said McKiver. “One of the complications could be rapid blood loss. In order to detect it, you need to vigilant and maintain a close eye.”
McKiver’s vigilance prompted him to action on more than one occasion.
Six months ago, the 26-year-old helped stabilize a patient’s spouse who fainted.
“Our focus is centered on caring for the patient. We’re not expecting their spouse to pass out, but it’s always a possibility,” said McKiver. “We administered oxygen, gave him some quick sugars to drink and continued to care for his wife.”
On another occasion, McKiver heard someone cry out for help as he was leaving the hospital and found a lady unconscious on the floor. He initiated cardiopulmonary resuscitation right away and alerted the medical rapid response team.
“The medical training I’ve learned in the Air Force allowed me to get her to a higher level of care in the emergency room to ensure she would be fine,” said McKiver.
McKiver says his motivation to provide ‘Trusted Care Anywhere’ comes from the loss of his grandmother and the Air Force.
“My grandmother had medical issues I didn’t know much about until I joined the Air Force, and learned how to respond to stroke victims,” said the medical services technician. “That’s when it became serious to me. It made me want to help anyone, anywhere, regardless of the situation.”
The two-year Airman says the most rewarding part of his job is to help patients feel comfortable and at ease during their procedure.
“I want to show our patients we have the best facility and can provide the best level of care,” he said.
McKiver says it’s humbling to know the work medics do on a daily basis does not go unnoticed.