What You Need to Know to Stop the Bleed and Save a Life

Brentwood Fire and Rescue Department Leads Stop the Bleed Training at Cardio Partners

On Wednesday, Lt. Mike McCutcheon and Engineer Scott Barnes of the Brentwood Fire and Rescue Department led the Cardio Partners team in a hands-on Stop the Bleed training at the company’s Nashville headquarters. The highly experienced emergency medical first responders helped staff members better understand the contents of the company’s popular  Stop the Bleed kits and how to use them efficiently and effectively.

 

What is Stop the Bleed?

“Started in October of 2015 by the White House, Stop the Bleed is a national awareness campaign and a call to action. Stop the Bleed is intended to cultivate grassroots efforts that encourage bystanders to become trained, equipped, and empowered to help in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives” (Department of Homeland Security).

“If you don’t know how to use this,” cautioned Lt. McCutcheon, holding a tourniquet in his hands, “they will die right in front of you.”

Still reeling from a recent shooting at a nearby Antioch Waffle House and from the tragic Parkland and Las Vegas shootings, where bystanders jumped in and saved lives, participants took his somber warning to heart.

“For me, this was about outfitting myself with the skills to best help my neighbor/family member or anyone in the event of an emergency” – Sean Stargel, Cardio Account Specialist

A person who is bleeding severely can die from loss of blood in less than five minutes. As bystanders are typically the first on the scene in the event of a mass shooting, injury, or accident, first aid certification and Stop the Bleed training sessions are increasingly important. With the right training, anyone can help stabilize a victim and improve their chances of survival.

The training, despite its grim subject matter and sobering opening line, managed to strike a lighthearted tone and packed in a great deal of vital information. Covering basic bleed control techniques such as direct pressure, wound packing, compression, femoral pressure points, and tourniquet application, the course was comprehensive and confidence-inspiring.

If you’re interested in learning more about Preparing Your Community to “Stop the Bleed,” Cardio Partners’ sister company, Bound Tree Medical, held a webinar on the topic in February. The webinar is available for on-demand viewing.

What’s Included in a Stop The Bleed Kit?

Curaplex Stop the Bleed kits are designed to provide the user with immediate access to life-saving products that can control bleeding and traumatic hemorrhaging. These vacuum-packed and tamper-proof kits include:

  • A permanent marker
  • 2 pairs of gloves, latex-free, large
  • 1 C-A-T® tourniquet
  • 1 emergency bandage
  • Pair of trauma shears, 7.5”
  • 2 rolls of primed, compressed gauze dressing
  • A printed insert which shows instructions for use

Advanced kits include 1 Pack of HALO seals and QuikClot combat gauze.

How Can You Save a Life and Stop the Bleed?

Remain calm and rely on your training in the event of an emergency. Before you do anything, take stock of the situation and make sure you’re safe and out of the line of fire. If necessary, move yourself and the injured person to safety. Once you’ve done this, and it’s safe to do so, call 911 and then offer assistance to the victim or victims.

“Remember, it’s their emergency, not yours,” said McCutcheon. “If they’re still conscious, the likelihood of survival is good.”

The Office of Homeland Security has provided a series of simple instructions to help bystanders respond quickly and appropriately in the event of moderate to severe bleeding. These simple steps can help stabilize victims until professional medical assistance arrives.

Venous bleeding is often characterized by blood that trickles or oozes from the site of the wound. Most often these types of injuries can be treated with pressure, compression bandages, or QuikClot Gauze. If the victim is conscious and alert, have them help themselves by elevating and applying pressure while you assess the situation and, if possible, put on gloves.

McCutcheon and Scott reiterated the importance of first assessing the situation for personal safety, then applying pressure, and if the bleeding does not stop, placing a tourniquet “high and tight” on the affected limb. You’ll know you’ve successfully applied the tourniquet when there’s no pulse and the bleeding has stopped. It’s worth noting that a correctly applied tourniquet is extremely painful. If you’re able, label the tourniquet with the time it was applied. This allows emergency personnel to provide the best care possible.

The firefighters also covered basic triage techniques, how to correctly apply HALO seals to sucking chest wounds, and how to stanch bleeding from junctional wounds (such as those located in the neck, armpit, or groin).

Time to enroll in a first aid course? Interested in learning more about our emergency first aid kits our a Curaplex Stop the Bleed kit? Call our team at 866-349-4362 or visit AED.com or CardioPartners.com for more information.

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