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New paramedics train through height of COVID-19 crisis

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Paramedics in training have been thrown into the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ryan Moore/WKOW
Paramedics in training have been thrown into the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

MADISON (WKOW) -- The Madison Fire Department is welcoming a unique class of paramedics this summer.

After months of classroom preparation at Madison College, David Bartkowiak, Tyler Prothero and Brain Tremain moved to their ambulance ride-along phase roughly the same time coronavirus cases started rising throughout Wisconsin.

The three had to keep up their on-the-job training in emergency response as the entire department worked to navigate a new normal to protect themselves.

"That was extremely eye-opening not only to become a paramedic but to become one of the first paramedics coming out of school and into this Covid situation," Bartkowiak said.

The process included new protocols for response and new personal protective equipment, but in the end, the paramedics said the mission remained the same.

"At the end of the day people call 911 because they have a problem so it's nothing different, totally foreign to us it's just something that we really have to navigate through," Tremain said.

Thursday on 27 News at 10 we'll show you the challenges these new paramedics faced as they took on their new roles and why they say the past few months have proved they're on the right path.

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Michelle Alfini

Reporter, WKOW

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