Medical Training Specialists

John Gonzalez and Jill Blackwell, instructors at MTS.

When tragedy strikes, bystanders trained in CPR/BLS (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Basic Life Support) and first aid can be the critical lifeline for those hurt and in need of urgent medical attention. Medical Training Specialists (MTS), located at 1686 North Columbia St. Suite B, offers quality lifesaving training for medical professionals, companies and organizations, and the general public. 

MTS is owned and operated by local EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) and Baldwin County Coroner John Gonzalez. Along with instructor Jill Blackwell, the two have decades of experience teaching lifesaving techniques and sharing their knowledge so that others may benefit. 

“I am passionate about saving lives,” said Blackwell. “Most people die at home, and it is crucial for family members, caregivers and neighbors to know CPR/BLS to help those in critical need of medical attention.” 

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), each year, more than 350,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur in the United States. AHA statistics state that if more people knew CPR, more lives could be saved. 

According to Blackwell, it only takes brain cells four minutes to die after oxygen is cut off and six minutes for complete brain damage to occur. She stresses that those closest to the victim should have quality training to assess the critical needs of the person and decide upon the methods of medical care that can be given before first responders arrive. 

The company offers certification courses in CPR (for adults, children and infants), first aid, ACLS (Advanced Cardio Life Support), PALS (Pediatric Advanced Life Support), bloodborne pathogens, EKG — just to name a few. They train first responders including police and EMTs, construction companies, daycare workers, students, athletic officials, doctors and nurses, and individuals. 

PALS certification is defined by the AHA as developing knowledge and skills to manage critically ill infants and children. This specialized training is designed for anyone who responds to emergencies with infants and children, both in and out of the hospital, including medical personnel and caregivers. 

“Parents, teachers, caregivers — they all should know how to help a child or infant in an emergency situation, in my opinion,” said Blackwell, a former childcare provider. “Everyone should know how to clear the airways of a choking child. It’s vital knowledge we should all retain.” 

Blackwell admits that emergencies are stressful and chaotic, and many bystanders do not know how to help, even with basic first aid. The American Red Cross suggests the public be trained in the best practices of first aid to respond to a wide range of conditions, including asthma emergencies, anaphylaxis, burns, choking, diabetic emergencies, external bleeding, environmental emergencies, heart attack, poisoning, neck, head, and spinal injuries, stroke, and seizure. 

MTS also provides recertification courses for those needing to retain certification for professional or personal reasons. 

“Techniques evolve and change, and medical knowledge advances — that is why recertification takes place. We, as human beings, also forget and need to refresh our knowledge so that we can continue to help those in need. 

MTS offers classes at its 1686 N. Columbia St. location and will travel to locations within the Middle Georgia area for group events. To find out more about the courses MTS offers and pricing, call 478-451-5091. 

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