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Tactical Medicine Essentials, Second Edition



Designed for EMS and medical professionals of all levels of training, Tactical Medicine Essentials, Second Edition provides the foundation needed to become a world-class tactical medical provider (TMP). Written by an experienced team of authors from diverse backgrounds. This text covers the essential curriculum of tactical medicine, including tactical patient assessment, expedient extrication and evacuation, and self-defense skills. The Tactical Medicine Essentials, Second Edition thoroughly prepares medical professionals to safely accompany a SWAT unit into the tactical environment.

Current, State-of-the-Art Medical Content for the Tactical Environment

The rapidly changing tactical environment requires specialized rapid assessment techniques. The tactical patient assessment process presents a single, comprehensive chapter to ensure that students understand. How to rapidly apply this specialized process to patients in the tactical environment. Each traumatic injury chapter further reinforces the tactical patient assessment process by highlighting the unique aspects of each traumatic injury. A new chapter about active assailant mass-casualty incidents add. In addition, law enforcement education topics for TMPs compile a new appendix.

Dynamic Features

The following features enable EMS and medical professionals to take the extra step toward becoming outstanding TMPs:

  • At the Scene – Advice from experienced TMPs on how to excel during a mission
  • Safety – Information on how to remain safe in the tactical environment, even under the threat of violence
  • Medical Gear – Tips on the best equipment to pack and utilize in the tactical environment
  • Detailed Step-by-Step Skill Reviews – A thorough discussion of how to perform lifesaving skills in the high-intensity tactical environment

Trauma Life Support (BTLS) program

Dr. Campbell passed away in 2018. He is an excellent physician, innovator, pioneer, and teacher with many outstanding achievements and was known worldwide for his innovative and groundbreaking work in developing prehospital trauma education. In 1982, Dr. Campbell founded the Basic Trauma Life Support (BTLS) program. It was the first course and curriculum dedicated to prehospital trauma assessment and trauma care worldwide. It taught, alongside Colonel Jim Smith (his future co-author), and conducted the first BTLS course in August of 1982. He wanted to teach paramedics the principles of advanced trauma life support (ATLS) to improve the care provided to trauma patients. He partnered with the Alabama Chapter of ACEP to publish the first BTLS textbook in 1982.

Basic Trauma Life Support has since been renamed to International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) to better reflect its scope and mission, and it is now a global organization offering 15 types of trauma courses and teaching over 30,000 students annually in over 40 countries. “John did not set out to EMS leader,” said ITLS Editor-in-Chief Roy Alson, Ph.D., MD, FACEP, who has served on the editorial board alongside Dr. Campbell for many years.

Dr. Campbell had a lifelong interest in the military

“Thirty years ago, he developed a new trauma course and said, ‘Why aren’t we teaching this to EMS?’ Along the way, he convinced countless doctors, nurses, and EMS, fire, and police personnel to share his vision. The legacy John leaves measures the lives saved by those who have been ITLS trained. He will be missed.” Dr. Campbell had a lifelong interest in the military and support law enforcement throughout his life.

Dr. Campbell, Chief Jim Smith, Dr. Lawrence Heiskell, and Dr. John Wipfler worked together with over 120 contributors and reviewers to generate the first comprehensive textbook on tactical medicine, Tactical Medicine Essentials, which was copyrighted and published in 2012. Endorsed by the American College of Emergency Physicians, Dr. Campbell was able to contribute his extensive experience in the public safety prehospital arena to this textbook. The first edition has sold over 6000 copies and uses tactical medicine education worldwide. Dr. Campbell’s legacy lives on not only in the form of ITLS but also in the form of Tactical Medicine Essentials, Second Edition, written by his three co-authors.

Clinical Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine

Dr. John Wipfler is a board-certified attending emergency physician and a Clinical Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine. In medical school, he joined the armed forces starting in 1985 and retired at the rank of Major, U.S. Army Medical Corps (Res) after 14 years of service. In 1994 as an academic emergency physician, he obtained training and additional military experience (Panama, multiple military bases) and started volunteering as a tactical physician for several SWAT teams in the Midwest.

Gaining valuable experience over the past 25 plus years, he continues to serve. As a tactical physician and EMS medical director for three SWAT teams and multiple law enforcement agencies in central Illinois. Since completing his internship in surgery and residency in emergency medicine, he teaches and practices medicine with the Department of Emergency Medicine at OSF Healthcare Saint Francis Medical Center. A Level I Trauma Center in Peoria, Illinois. Dr. Wipfler co-founded the first tactical EMS unit in the state of Illinois. the Special Tactical Assistance Trauma Team (STATT) in 1998.

He is a sworn LEO, a Sheriff’s Physician who has involves tactical operations for more than 220 SWAT callouts. The STATT Tactical EMS unit (five physicians, one nurse, two paramedics) supports three law enforcement tactical teams: Central Illinois Emergency Response Team (CIERT), Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm Services team (ILEAS region 6/7), and the Peoria City Police Department Special Response Team (SRT). He also supports callouts and/or training with the United States Secret Service for regional presidential motorcade escorts. The United States Marshals Service (SOG), and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

SOG Helicopter Mission

He has flown SOG helicopter missions with the United States Marshals Service Special Operations Group during high-risk prisoner transport. As a certified firearms instructor who is also a qualified expert in pistol, small-bore rifle, and high-power rifle marksmanship, Dr. Wipfler routinely teaches firearms safety classes integrated with tactical medicine principles. He is certified by the Illinois State Police, and along with his wife. They have taught over 10 concealed carry courses.

He has completed multiple military and civilian tactical/ medical courses, including the Chapman Academy (Basic and Advanced Pistol, Tactical Rifle), Combat Casualty Care Course, Counter-Narcotics & Terrorism Operational Medical Support (CONDOMS), Radiation Emergency Assistance Center /Training Site (REAC/TS) radioactive injury management course, Heckler & Koch Basic and Advanced Tactical EMS courses, United States Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Disease (USAMRIID) Chemical and Biological Warfare School, Insights Training, and Strike Tactical Solutions close quarters combat courses. Dr. Wipfler was instrumental in starting and serving as medical director of the Region 2 RMERT disaster response team in central Illinois and has deployed on multiple real-world disasters including several large tornado strikes with mass casualties.

Emergency Response Team (IMERT)

Dr. Wipfler served with 12 others on the founding executive council. The sole state-wide disaster response agency in Illinois, the Illinois Medical Emergency Response Team (IMERT). He served for 5 years as medical director of Life Flight and has served as a flight physician for hundreds of air medical rescues and transfers. He has co-authored textbooks on emergency medicine and firearms safety, written chapters for textbooks—including the tactical medicine chapter in the International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) text—as well as multiple tactical medicines and research papers. Dr. Wipfler lectures internationally (Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, others) and teaches tactical medicine, disaster preparedness, bioterrorism/WMD response, and advanced emergency ultrasound at the University of Illinois College of Medicine.

In 1999, Dr. Wipfler developed one of the first emergency medicine residency programs tactical medicine elective rotations in the world. This is a two-week training session that over 90 percent of the EM residents at UICOMP / OSF St. Francis Residency Program complete during their three-year training program. Many have graduated and moved on to new communities where they now serve as tactical physicians throughout the USA. As the co-chair of the Illinois Tactical Officers Association (ITOA) tactical EMS committee, he has been involved in expanding TEMS in the Midwest and instructing Tactical EMS with the Chief Jeff Chudwin and the ITOA and other law agencies, and has co-chaired the annual ITOA Tactical Medicine Conference for 6 years.

Medical Director Of Life Flight

He gained valuable experience by teaching with Dr. Heiskell at the International School of Tactical Medicine in California for many years. In 2005 Dr. Wipfler was asked by officials with the Department of Homeland Security to serve with an 18-agency member tactical medicine coalition in California, representing the Illinois Department of Public Health Tactical Medicine Committee. This California committee worked with the California Commission on Police Officer Standards and Training and California EMS Authority (EMSA) to create the State of California Tactical Medicine Operational Program and Standardized Training Recommendations, approved in March 2010. He continues to engage in firearm competition, and 3-gun matches, advanced pistol courses, and other training help keep his skills sharp.

Dr. Wipfler recently competed in the 2018 US National Patrol Rifle Competition in Novi, Michigan (LE only). Where he scored in the top 9 shooters of over 100 law enforcement officers. For hobbies, he enjoys scuba diving, fishing, and continues to engage in mountaineering with friends and family, having summited the Matterhorn, Mount Rainier, Mount Shasta, Mount Baker, Long’s Peak, Hallet’s Peak, and others. He and his wife are Blessed and very proud of their six children and the many travels and family adventures they have shared together. When he initiated one of the first tactical medicine teams in the Midwest. He began teaching EM residents about tactical medicine.

About the Author

At that time, in 1999, there was no formal textbook of tactical medicine. So he was honored to serve as the lead author and join with three trusted friends (Chief Jim Smith, Dr. Heiskell, and Dr. Campbell) to assemble a textbook that gathered the input and expertise of over 120 seasoned professionals in prehospital and tactical medicine, fire, law enforcement, disaster response, military operations, and other talented individuals. Many members of the ACEP Section of Tactical Medicine were able to provide valuable expert input. The resulting textbook, published by Jones and Bartlett Learning, was endorsed by ACEP and is now used to help educate students internationally. This new second edition enhances even further by additional expert reviewers and with updated information. Dr. Wipfler considers it a true honor and a privilege to medically support the brave men and women in blue and camo uniforms.s

Additional information

Weight 1.65 lbs
Dimensions 8.5 × 0.6 × 10.8 in
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