Studies show that help given by first responders can often make the difference between life and death. In the event of a tragedy, trained bystanders can provide a vital initial response to stop uncontrollable bleeding before medical professionals arrive at the scene. In October of 2015, the White House launched the Stop the Bleed national awareness campaign and call to action. This grassroots effort encourages civilians to become trained, equipped and empowered to help in a bleeding emergency.
The American College of Surgeons has estimated that it has helped train more 600,000 people in bleeding control. Firehouses, community centers, hospitals, and schools are among some of the places where training courses are offered.
Stop the Bleed training will teach the following skills:
- Determining if an area is safe to provide assistance to a victim
- Identifying tools to assist you such as first-aid and bleeding control kits or everyday items that can be used to control the flow of blood
- Applying direct pressure at the site of the wound using your hands
- Packing cloth or gauze to deep wounds to control bleeding
- Applying a tourniquet to an injured limb in order to stop bleeding
- Keeping victims calm until medical professionals arrive
The number one cause of preventable death from trauma is uncontrolled bleeding. Trauma may result from accidents or intentional harm and can occur in a wide variety of locations such as your home or workplace. The more people who have first aid training and are knowledgeable about the use of bleeding control kits, the more chances an injured victim will survive that injury.
Stop the Bleed training is becoming increasingly encouraged. Courses can be found online or you are urged to reach out to your local Fire Department, Emergency Medical Services agency or the community outreach department at your local hospital.