The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) recently hosted a “Stop the Bleed” event to train students how to respond in emergency situations.
Mass shootings have become regular occurrences. Over the past five weeks, three major mass casualty events have occurred in the United States: the Las Vegas shooting that killed 59 people and injured more than 500, the Manhattan Truck Attack that killed eight and injured nearly a dozen, and most recently, the Texas church shooting that killed 26 people and injured 20.
Stop the Bleed is “something that was born out of some tragic incidents; it originally started being discussed after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary” said Sasha Adams, M.D., assistant professor in the department of surgery at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth and surgeon at Memorial Hermann Red Duke Trauma Institute. “When you looked at the deaths from the Sandy Hook s hooting, some of the people died immediately, but a lot of them died over the coming hours before it was safe enough for medical personnel to get in there. … If we could have stopped them from bleeding before the EMTs got there, then maybe we could have stopped them from dying.”
Because it is not safe and often not possible for EMTs to be on scene immediately in an active-shooter/attacker situation, UTHealth welcomed 80 students from all six UTHealth schools in Houston to learn how to recognize life-threatening bleeding, pack wounds and apply tourniquets.
“We all vaguely know about a tourniquet, but we’ve never felt it and we’ve never seen it and we haven’t actually had to think through it,” said Lauren Leining, an epidemiology student at UTHealth’s School of Public Health. “I think being able to have this learning experience in an environment that we are all comfortable in, we will be able to apply this to an emergency situation when we are experiencing shock and it will allow us to think a little bit more clearly when the time is critical.”
The students also packed 150 Stop the Bleed kits that will be placed in the automated external defibrillator (AED) boxes around UTHealth buildings.
“In working with our department of emergency medicine faculty, it has become clear that in these traumatic injury events, if we have the availability of these kits that have tourniquets and packing gauze, that survivorship can be improved,” said Robert Emery, DrPH, vice president of safety, health, environment and risk management at UTHealth.
Similar kits are available to purchase commercially, but Emery points out that they are not streamlined. Adams and her team suggested items to place in the kits based on what she and her trauma team deemed most necessary—including two tourniquets, hemostatic gauze, scissors, gloves and a mask. There are currently 128 AEDs around the UTHealth campus, but Emery points out that even if you have an AED present, it is not useful if no one knows how to use it.
“Having these supplies is only part of the story. Having the knowledge of how to apply them is equally important,” Emery said. “Its an unfortunate fact of life, but because all of the folks here are in the health professions, it is our obligation to know how to respond in these kind of situations and hopefully these people will turn around and help others know about it, as well.”
Although the event was capped at 80 students, UTHealth plans to offer the certification course on a quarterly basis to welcome additional students. For those who could not attend the event, Adams offers the following tips to improve survivorship and handle an emergency situation.
• A—Alert: call 911 for help or designate someone else to call.
• B—Identify bleeding: find the bleeding and figure out how to stop it.
• C—Cover the wound.
Things to think about in a trauma situation:
• Make sure that you are safe first—you do not want to put yourself in harm’s way.
• Make sure that the scene is safe, particularly if you are in an active-shooter situation.
• Protect yourself from blood-borne infections—you will want to have gloves.
• If you have a tourniquet, you go high, and apply it only on an arm or a leg, avoiding all joints.
• When you are packing a wound, use hemostatic gauze if you’ve got it, any kind of gauze after that. If you don’t have those, any kind of cloth—clean is better, but if you don’t have it, go with whatever you have. The goal is to stop bleeding.
• Once you have a fabric to pack the wound with, you want to actually stuff the fabric down into the wound as tight as you can. When you put it in, you go as deep as you can, as tight as you can and then you hold pressure on top of it.
@bigdock Great news! Sending you our best wishes.
If you love citrus, you will really love these recipes with options from salad to stir-fry.
Women with darker skin can get #skincancer, too. Our Dr. Susan Chon shares what you should know: https://t.co/02BBg4YNmw @thirdAGE #endcancer
Overcoming #cancer shapes 3 MD Anderson employees’ perspectives: https://t.co/cUt1DJj9F1 #endcancer https://t.co/FmZgRjUw0b
University of Houston@UHouston
Legacy is planting seeds in a garden you never get to see. Tonight we’re celebrating the legacy of @UHValentiSchool. Thank you @seguntheprogram for being MC and @jdbalart for the Impact Award https://t.co/tBmWEylyiU
Entering a new era: learn more about TMC3, the new translational research campus. https://t.co/pCLaez3zts
Be a part of the nation's largest autism research study. Get in-person help with signing up for SPARK for Autism at the Houston Museum of Natural Science during their sensory friendly event April 28. http://bit.ly/SPARKevents
An Army Veteran confronts his own trauma with a camera https://t.co/qoMYFKKZjq via @nytimes
In this interview with @ktrhnews, Dr. James Langabeer of @UTHealth_SBMI and @UTEmergencyMed discusses the decline in prescriptions for addictive painkillers: https://t.co/CMlYcJngA4
At 10 months old, David was so weak and behind in development that he couldn't even sit up. But now the bubbly 4-year-old is growing fast and swinging baseball bats. Read about his miraculous journey w/@UTPhysicians CARE Clinic. https://t.co/3chQLYaeex #ManyFacesOfUTHealth https://t.co/LZptSVgsDY
RT @UTCVSurgery: Another great free medical screening service brought to you by @UTPhysicians! Check out Dr Stuart Harlin on this morning’s…
Veterans serving Veterans: Researchers who served. This @usairforce Veteran volunteered as a pararescueman in Vietnam, and then went on to serve others with a career in orthopedic research. https://t.co/2NQHhSTmQx via @VeteransHealth on #VAntagePoint
At 10 months old, David was so weak and behind in development that he couldn't even sit up. But now the bubbly 4-year-old is growing fast and already swinging baseball bats. Read about his miraculous journey with the UT Physicians CARE Clinic. #ManyFacesOfUTHealth
Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Navy Veteran Willard Knockum Jr. Willard served from 1964 to 1971 during the Vietnam War. Willard joined the Navy in 1964. He was trained in counterinsurgency and survival surveillance reconnaissance and weapons at the Marine Base Camp in Pendleton, California. He became a Boatswain Mate, a role that fulfills a variety of tasks such as lookout duty, training and directing maintenance duties, damage control, operating and maintaining equipment and more. Willard also participated in North Atlantic Treaty Organization and anti-submarine warfare exercises. Willard served on the destroyer USS Fox 779 before he deployed to Vietnam in 1969 during the Vietnam War where he served in Saigon and Dong Tam. He was assigned to Military Assistance Command, a group of assault river boats that patrolled hostile waters around the Army Base at Dong Tam. For his service, Willard was awarded the Vietnam Service Medal and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal. Willard now lives in Folsom, Louisiana as a retired United Postal Service mail handler. Thank you for your service, Willard!
Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is @USNavy Veteran Willard Knockum, Jr https://t.co/7lDPTdSI86