Stop the Bleed training saves lives

Published: May. 19, 2022 at 8:39 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Mass shootings that appear more frequently across the country are bringing new attention to the need for all of us to know what to do if we happen to find ourselves in an emergency, waiting for first responders.

Uncontrolled bleeding is the number one cause of preventable death from trauma.

May 19 is National Stop the Bleed day. Dr. Brittany Bankhead, a trauma surgeon and Texas Tech Physician, says “With or without medical training, if you have this Stop the Bleed training, you have the ability to stop a bleed.”

Dr. Bankhead says it’s always best to take a class similar to what you would do to learn CPR because that gives you confidence at the scene. But even without training, she says if you come up on someone at risk of bleeding to death, you’re not going to make anything worse by trying to help. Just remember that the best thing you can do is to pack the wound. She explains “I think a lot of people’s tendency is to grab a towel, grab something large, a big T shirt, a sweatshirt or something and kind of cover it up. So they don’t have to look at it. But that’s not really effective. And the wound continues to bleed, the best thing that you can do is use one finger or a little bit of gauze and stuff the wound and pack it and hold it really tight.”

Dr. Bankhead says a traumatic injury can come from any number of mishaps at home, from the cut of a kitchen knife to a major accident with heavy machinery like a lawn mower. On the road, you may find yourself wanting to help the victim of a car accident before paramedics arrive.

Stop the bleed courses are no more than 90 minutes. If you would like to learn more about the training, go to

The American College of Surgeons now offers an online interactive course at

You can also contact the University Medical Center EMS at (806)775-8725 to learn about local Stop the Bleed training

opportunities here in Lubbock.

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