NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. —
University Medical Center of Southern Nevada and Nellis Air Force Base, have partnered to teach approximately 40 Stop the Bleed instructors to educate members of the community on crisis care.
The purpose of Stop the Bleed is to build national resilience by better preparing the public to save lives by raising awareness of basic actions to stop life threatening bleeding following everyday emergencies as well as man-made and natural disasters.
The course trains community members how to control bleeding until professional help arrives. Students focus on the mechanisms of the body and how bleeding can be drastically decreased via three methods of hemorrhage control: compression, tourniquet use and wound packing, said Cassie Trummel, UMC trauma outreach and injury prevention program coordinator.
“It’s important for Nellis, especially from the lessons that we learned on October 1, that anytime, anywhere, this may need to be done,” said 1st Lt. Megan Huntley, 99th Medical Operations Squadron pediatric nurse. “For us, when we’re out in the community, if anything like this happens ever again we will know what to do.”
People are hesitant to help because they are nervous or scared that they might make the situation worse, but just a small amount of aid provided can push a person toward surviving the event, said Trummel.
“It’s important because we need people to know what to do before emergency medical services arrive, and people need to know how to help themselves or someone else,” said Trummel. “This class is different from other first aid courses because we deal specifically with life-threatening bleeding. We talk specifically about how to deal with hemorrhage control in order to save someone’s life.”
With this knowledge, officials at Nellis reached out to UMC to have instructors trained and began offering the course on base multiple times per month. Currently, between UMC and Nellis, 4,763 Airmen and civilians have completed the course, said 1st Lt. Caitlin Totman, 99th Inpatient Operations Squadron registered nurse.
“We brought the equipment and trained the first two classes at Nellis to start the process, and it’s kept on from there,” said Trummel.
“It is a great way for us to give back to the community and help our country remain prepared, much like we do as Airmen,” said Totman.
The future plans of the program at Nellis are to obtain the training materials needed to increase efforts in the community, and create a Stop the Bleed council to create courses, recruit instructors and volunteers.
For more information, visit https://www.bleedingcontrol.org/.