Mercy's emergency personnel too often see the devastating results of drinking and driving. Staff from Mercy’s Injury Prevention Center assist local high schools to stage mock car crashes, or docudramas. The purpose of docudramas is to give students a glimpse of what happens during an alcohol-related car crash, texting and driving crash, or any type of distracted driving accident.
The process of setting up docudramas is a community effort. A team of Mercy Injury Prevention staff use makeup and other supplies to transform student volunteers into realistic-looking crash victims. Mercy also provides a planning packet to each schools that helps assist them in all areas involved. Firefighters, paramedics, police officers and other emergency personnel respond to the scene as if it were a real situation. The local fire departments use the Jaws of Life to extract crash victims from the car. Paramedics treat victims’ mock injuries and police officers give sobriety tests to the mock drunk drivers. The officers will even put the mock drunk or distracted driver in handcuffs.
Each year approximately 20 high schools in the Ozarks coordinate a docudrama with the Mercy Injury Prevention Center. Following the crash scene, the student audience attends an assembly led by a Mercy Injury Prevention Center educator, which gives the student body an opportunity to discuss the crash scene and the events surrounding the mock crash.
A Missouri and Arkansas designated Level 1 Trauma and Burn Center, Mercy is dedicated to community outreach and prevention by providing these types of educations programs. According to state regulation, a Level 1 Trauma Center such as Mercy’s must meet and maintain certain criteria and obligations for the community. Because Mercy chooses to be a Level I Trauma Center, there is always a surgeon inside the hospital prepared to respond to a trauma patient in the emergency department or the intensive care unit. Mercy also has a dedicated trauma research program along with the injury prevention center, which sets them apart form other hospitals in the area.
If you are interested in organizing a docudrama for your school, organization or business, contact us at 417-820-SAFE (7233).