SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4Utah) – Uncontrolled bleeding is the number one cause of death after a mass casualty event. Severe bleeding can cause shock or death within five or 10 minutes — before medical help arrives. Mary Erasmus, Intermountain Alta View Hospital Trauma Coordinator, says that’s why the Alta View Hospital in Sandy is hosting upcoming “Stop the Bleed” classes to teach members of the public how to stop bleeding in cases of mass injuries.
Stop the Bleed is a national injury prevention initiative aimed at teaching the public how to control a major hemorrhage or bleeding situation before EMS crews/first responders arrive — because no matter how quickly emergency responders arrive, nearby bystanders will always be first on the scene.
Stop the Bleed training provides participants with the necessary tools to become empowered immediate responders. The impetus of the Stop the Bleed program has been to train as many people who can be trained until EMT paramedics can get there to treat it properly. This is vital in a mass casualty situation, such as an active shooter situation, or even when you’re hiking or biking and come across someone who is injured and experiencing significant bleeding.
Intermountain Healthcare is hosting several Stop the Bleed training classes in the coming months, including two at Intermountain Alta View Hospital in Sandy to teach people how to act quickly when a life is at stake.
August 15 at 6:30 pm
August 29 at 6:30 pm
September 12 at 6:30 pm
Stop the Bleed training classes are held regularly at several Intermountain Healthcare hospitals. To find a class near you, go to: https://intermountainhealthcare.org/calendar/and type in Stop the Bleed.
If I am a bystander, what should I do first?
First, ensure your own safety:
- Before you offer any help, you must ensure your own safety.
- If you become injured, you will not be able to help the victim.
- Provide care to the injured person if the scene is safe for you to do so.
- If, at any time, your safety is threatened, attempt to remove yourself (and the victim, if possible) from danger and find a safe location.
After I ensure my own safety, what other steps would I need to assist at the scene?
Look for life-threatening bleeding:
- Find the source of bleeding
- Open or remove the clothing over the wound so you can clearly see it. By removing clothing, you will be able to see injuries that may have been hidden or covered.
Compress and Control
There are a number of methods that can be used to stop bleeding and they all have one thing in common—compressing a bleeding blood vessel in order to stop the bleeding. If you don’t have a trauma first aid or stop the bleed kit:
Apply direct pressure on the wound (cover the wound with a clean cloth and apply pressure by pushing directly on it with both hands)
1. Take any clean cloth (for example, a shirt) and cover the wound.
2. If the wound is large and deep, try to “stuff” the cloth down into the wound.
3. Apply continuous pressure with both hands directly on top of the bleeding wound.
4. Push down as hard as you can.
5. Hold pressure to stop bleeding. Continue pressure until relieved by medical responders.
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