Who We Are 

Twenty years ago, the armed forces realized that there were a number of battlefield injuries that, while not immediately lethal, were critical enough to require urgent care in order to preserve life. These included: major extremity trauma with uncontrolled bleeding, penetrating chest and abdominal trauma, and airway obstruction due to either direct trauma or neurological injury. If casualties with these conditions could be stabilized and then rapidly evacuated to definitive care, survival rates would be greatly improved. From these battlefield experiences came significant improvements in the initial treatment of front line injuries and a new medical concept: Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC or TC3).

 At the same time, the advent of terrorism and escalating violence on our own soil brought home the fact that non-medically trained individuals are being increasingly called upon to perform basic emergency response to ballistic and penetrating injuries, all while taking into account the ongoing danger of further injury, both to the initial victim and to the rescuers. TC3 was rapidly adopted by law enforcement for scenarios where officers under fire could provide self-aid as well as care for fallen teammates in “hot” situations where conventional EMS could not assist, and the training is successfully saving lives.  

Dr. James Berry and Dr. Leland Lancaster, seeing first-hand the incredible impact TC3 had, saw the application for this training not only for injuries sustained from violence, but also for the increasing rate of sporting and job-related accidents. Now, for the first time, these medical tools and procedures are available to the public to provide preliminary care for ballistic, penetrating, and blast injuries.  Developed by leading experts in tactical, trauma, and emergency medicine, Tactical First Aid (TFA)™moves beyond traditional Red Cross First Aid and empowers law enforcement, bystanders, friends, and other "pre-first responders" to react quickly and appropriately to emergency scenarios while buying time for trained EMS or other aid to arrive.

Dr. James M. Berry, M.D. is Professor of Anesthesiology and Chief of the Division of Multispecialty Adult Anesthesiology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, and has served as the Director of Trauma Anesthesia Services at the Memorial Hermann Hospital, a Level 1 trauma center in Houston, Texas. He is board certified in Anesthesiology, as well as Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine, and has trained both NASA astronauts and Army Special Forces medics in trauma and emergency care.

Dr. Berry earned his medical degree from the University of Texas Medical School in Houston and is a life member of the AOA Honor Society. He performed a transitional internship at St. Joseph Hospital in Houston, a research fellowship in biophysics at the University of Houston, and a residency in anesthesiology at University of Texas Affiliated Hospitals, where he served as Chief Resident. After rotations at Guy’s and St. Thomas’ Hospitals in London, he joined the faculty at the University of Texas – Houston, where he served as the Residency program director for 5 years and later served as the Division Chief for Neurosurgical Anesthesia. His experience also includes Professor and Vice-Chair of the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Mississippi, where he was involved in broad areas of clinical service, including cardiothoracic and regional anesthesia services.

In addition to the book Tactical First Aid (TFA),™ Dr. Berry is a prolific author of research articles, book chapters, presentations and abstracts, is co-editor of the latest textbook on anesthesia equipment, and holds several patents. He has received many grants and awards for teaching and for perioperative innovation. His research interests include emergency care, environmental factors in medicine, anesthesia equipment and technology on the OR, and anesthetic gas recovery and recycling.  He is currently a board examiner for the American Board of Anesthesiology, a reviewer for Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine and Anesthesiology: Journal of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, and a member of the Environmental Task Force for the American Society of Anesthesiologists. 

Dr. James M. Berry, M.D.

Dr. Leland J. Lancaster Jr., M.D. (LCDR Ret. USNMC)

Dr. Leland J. Lancaster Jr., M.D.  (LCDR Ret. USNMC) is the Medical Director of Southeastern University’s EMT and Paramedic School and practiced at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Dr. Lancaster did his residency at the University of Alabama– Birmingham in General and Orthopaedic Surgery, and later practiced as the Medical Director of UABs  Critical Care Transport Program (Fixed Wing, Rotor Wing, and Ground), where he oversaw the transports of more than 25,000 critically ill and acutely injured patients in Alabama, across the U.S., and International Medical Evacuations.

Dr. Lancaster is retired from the United States Navy at the rank of Lt. Commander and is certified as a Master Diver and in Undersea Warfare Medicine. He helped develop Advanced Medical Techniques for Providers in Military Medicine with a specialty in high acuity ballistic and penetrating injuries.  He has led the industry in both early monitoring and intervention with telemedicine projects for the Military as well as EMS.

Dr. Lancaster has also been serving the EMS community for over 24 year as an EMT, Paramedic and Physician, and has been the Medical Director for Lifeguard Transport Services in the city of Spring Hill, Tennessee, for over 15 years.  As the city of Hoover, Alabama’s Fire Department Medical Director, he formed the first full time Tactical Physician Group, equipping the City Police SRT team and Patrol Officers with basic and advanced skills and equipment to be used immediately in wound and patient management. Shortly after the Columbine shooting he, along with other leaders, developed an “Active School Shooter Plan” for Schools, Fire, EMS, and Police to be coordinated and deliver care under fire.

Dr. Lancaster is well published in the area of Acute Treatment and Prevention. He has served as a Fundamentals of Critical Care Support Provider/ Instructor/ and Course Director, along with Advanced Trauma Life Support Provider/Instructor for over 20 years.  He has developed and published protocols in both the primary and secondary resuscitation of acutely injured patients, and has served as a Site Survey Physician for CAAS (Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services. He continues to be a staunch advocate for the training of TACTICAL FIRST AID in the setting of Educational Institutions, Police, Fire, EMS, as well as the General Public.