Ask the Expert: Stop the Bleed
Q: May is National Trauma Awareness Month. What is the most important aspect of trauma?
A:: This year marks the 30th anniversary of President Ronald Reagan’s recognition of the need for trauma awareness and delegation of resources to work toward not just reacting to and treating trauma-induced injuries, but highlight the most important aspect of trauma: prevention.
At CaroMont Health, we are actively supporting Stop the Bleed, an initiative created by The National Security Council, The American College of Surgeons and advisors from law enforcement and the United States military in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary Shooting of 2012. The main goal of Stop the Bleed is to prepare the general public to save lives.
Uncontrolled bleeding does not only occur after a mass casualty incident and can result from just everyday accidents. If the bleeding is severe, death can occur within minutes before emergency medical personnel even has the opportunity to respond. The Stop the Bleed program aims to connect members of the general public with health care professionals who provide hands-on education. The training ranges from how to use dressings, tourniquets and wound packing to providing immediate, life-saving aid to victims who are bleeding.
To date, over 50 volunteer CaroMont Health nurses and physicians, paramedics from Gaston County EMS, and paramedic students from Gaston College have become certified community trainers through CaroMont Health’s Train the Trainer program. After recent national events, our sense of urgency to provide this life-saving training to our community has intensified and CaroMont Trauma Services has partnered with Gaston County Schools to provide Stop the Bleed training for all school nurses and social workers. This is just the initial phase of our school system rollout, with our ultimate goal of providing all teachers with these life-saving skills.
Our resolve to bring Stop the Bleed to Gaston County also includes providing the tools that accompany Stop the Bleed training. CaroMont Trauma Services has secured grant funding to help supply bleeding control multi-pack kits to all 11 Gaston County high schools by the start of the 2018-2019 school year. These kits include necessary items to Stop the Bleed, including gauze, gloves and tourniquets. Individual kits for businesses, churches and community organizations throughout the county will also be disseminated. It is our hope to place bleeding control kits everywhere there is an AED (Automated External Defibrillator used to restore normal rhythm to a heart that is experiencing cardiac arrest) and everywhere large crowds gather. We hope that every member of the community will have the knowledge and feel empowered to be able to Stop the Bleed because the person whose life you could save may not be a stranger but instead a family member or friend, a neighbor, or possibly, your own. In the words of The American College of Surgeons, “The only thing more tragic than a death is a death that could have been prevented.”
Sharry Duncan, Assistant Manager
CaroMont Trauma Services
CaroMont Regional Medical Center is a Level III Trauma Center, one of only four in North Carolina. We diagnose, treat and manage serious traumatic injuries utilizing a multidisciplinary team to care for trauma patients. Click here to learn more about our emergency care services.