Program teaches lifesaving trauma techniques

A campaign called Stop the Bleed offers lectures and hands-on training for students learning lifesaving trauma techniques to help keep an emergency situation stable until first responders can arrive.

Posted: Aug 21, 2018 2:55 PM
Updated: Aug 21, 2018 2:57 PM

It's a nightmare scenario that's increasingly being viewed as a possibility, especially for students across the United States: emergency medical treatment for massive trauma.

"Let's say you've found someone who's bleeding. You've assessed the situation. You've decided that it's safe for you to enter. You've called for help or assigned somebody to do that. What do you do?" Dr. Habeeba Park, assistant professor of surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, asks while training high school students in skills that she hopes they never have to use. "You're trying to save this person's life."

Park's lessons are part of a campaign called Stop the Bleed, which holds special significance in a year marked by campus violence. In 2018 alone, more than 30 people have been killed in school shootings across the country, including 17 in February at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Dr. Thomas Scalea, physician-in-chief at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, said that when he was in school, "I didn't worry about whether I was going to be shot, and I didn't worry about whether there was going to be a mass casualty at my school or my city. It's a different world."

Through lectures and hands-on training, instructors teach how to apply tourniquets, pack wounds and keep the situation stable until first responders can arrive. These are techniques that were once reserved solely for members of the military, said Scalea, who is not involved in the campaign.

"You hear these things on the news, and you're like, that's sad, but when it's close to you or happening to you, it's a different thing altogether," said Angel Onons, a high school junior student in the Houston area, not far from where 10 people were killed at Santa Fe High School in May.

She got Stop the Bleed certified, which involved participating in a few hours of lectures and demonstrating the skills involved, just ahead of the 2018-19 school year.

"All the things we probably didn't take seriously, because of what happened [at Santa Fe High], we started to take it seriously," Onons said. "Even the drills that we had, it became more intense, and people's emotions were put into everything they were doing."

Stop the Bleed began after the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, in which 20 children and six adults were killed.

"If we go back to Sandy Hook, about a third of those children could have been saved, had we had this operational," Scalea said. "The paramedics aren't going to get there right away."

The campaign -- an initiative of the American College of Surgeons and the Hartford Consensus, a set of recommendations on active shooter and other mass casualty events by one of the association's committees -- aims to provide training and credible information on bleeding control.

Instructors are trained through the program. Anyone can sign up to take classes, which are popular with schools and workplaces.

In a mass-casualty scenario, every second can make a difference.

According to the American College of Surgeons, people with especially severe injuries can bleed to death within five minutes. "This is a disease of time. The clock starts ticking when you get hurt, not when you get to the hospital," Scalea said.

Yassmin Falahat, a Houston-area high school student, is also getting her certification ahead of the new school year. "Kids my age don't really want to think about all the possibilities that can happen," she said. "When you're doing these [lifesaving] things, they could be screaming or yelling and telling you to stop, and you just have to continue."

For 17-year-old Maddison Stueckler, it was the deadly shooting at the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland, in June that was on her mind as she too got Stop the Bleed certified. The shooting happened only minutes from where she goes to school.

"Along with the CPR that we learn in health class high school, this should be something that we learn, because it's happening everywhere," Stueckler said. "It happened 20 miles from where I live, and it's happening all over the place."

Scalea agreed: "I never thought we were going to need to do this. But we do. And this is arming the public with power. It's a powerful tool, the ability to save a life."

Lafayette
Cloudy
29° wxIcon
Hi: 28° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 19°
Kokomo
Cloudy
28° wxIcon
Hi: 28° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 18°
Rensselaer
Cloudy
27° wxIcon
Hi: 28° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 21°
Lafayette
Cloudy
29° wxIcon
Hi: 27° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 19°
Danville
Cloudy
27° wxIcon
Hi: 27° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 27°
Frankfort
Cloudy
25° wxIcon
Hi: 28° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 15°
Frankfort
Cloudy
25° wxIcon
Hi: 27° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 15°
Monticello
Cloudy
25° wxIcon
Hi: 27° Lo: 24°
Feels Like: 16°
Monticello
Mostly Cloudy
25° wxIcon
Hi: 28° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 16°
Logansport
Cloudy
27° wxIcon
Hi: 26° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 18°
Some snow Wednesday to Wednesday night.....
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 614946

Reported Deaths: 9807
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion849231342
Lake45784693
Allen33103560
Hamilton29752316
St. Joseph27572383
Elkhart24496346
Vanderburgh19679255
Tippecanoe18150144
Johnson15234296
Porter14970172
Hendricks14550253
Madison11071223
Clark10852145
Vigo10819185
Monroe9496115
Delaware9193136
LaPorte9173164
Howard8325148
Kosciusko811485
Warrick683399
Hancock6783106
Bartholomew6659100
Floyd6522113
Wayne6194164
Grant6050118
Dubois559081
Boone557968
Morgan551996
Henry512365
Marshall507884
Dearborn488745
Cass487864
Noble476159
Jackson428747
Shelby423381
Lawrence395180
Clinton375845
Gibson375560
Harrison354046
DeKalb351365
Montgomery349754
Knox337839
Miami325244
Steuben315846
Whitley313126
Wabash306951
Adams303636
Ripley301646
Putnam299152
Huntington295760
Jasper293035
White275943
Daviess271776
Jefferson267738
Decatur249983
Fayette249949
Greene242763
Posey241828
Wells237551
LaGrange230363
Scott227939
Clay225032
Randolph215848
Jennings200937
Spencer193622
Sullivan193633
Washington189023
Fountain185227
Starke177044
Jay168723
Owen168338
Fulton165430
Orange161035
Carroll160616
Rush156418
Perry156129
Vermillion150034
Franklin149933
Tipton134433
Parke13098
Pike118826
Blackford112023
Pulaski97937
Newton92621
Brown88835
Benton87110
Crawford8099
Martin75013
Warren6867
Switzerland6695
Union6297
Ohio4967
Unassigned0375

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events