You’re driving down the highway and see an accident ahead. You slow down. You see that someone is bleeding. You call 9-1-1. But emergency medical teams may be 9 to 12 minutes away. And sadly, massive bleeding from any accident or trauma can result in death in just 5 minutes.
That’s why Grand View Health is teaching community members lifesaving skills at its “Stop the Bleed” class on Tuesday, November 5. “We want to give people the confidence to act if they come upon a situation where someone is bleeding and needs help,” says Grand View emergency department nurse Julia Maximova, one of the class instructors.
“Stop the Bleed” is part of a national awareness campaign that began after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting seven years ago. That tragic event also inspired Maximova to teach the class. “My little ones had just started going to school, and I wanted to do something to help people in case of an emergency,” says Maximova, who originally taught the class to Grand View employees.
Now, community members can take the 90-minute course, held at the Grand View Hospital Community Education Center in Sellersville, Pa. It provides hands-on training for how to:
- Use a commercial tourniquet to stop bleeding
- Create a makeshift tourniquet if needed
- Pack a wound
- Apply appropriate pressure
“We also help people understand what to expect when they come upon a scene where someone is bleeding and needs help,” Maximova says. She and Tabitha Perez-Hightower, ASN, RN, will lead the class.
Two quick tips you can use if you encounter an emergency situation:
Use everyday materials – If you don’t have a tourniquet, you can use scarves, ties or a shirt off your back. Anything made with cloth is preferable to using a belt, which can be too rigid. You’ll also want to have something solid—a screwdriver or wrench, for example—that you can tie to the cloth to tighten the tourniquet.
Use Lots of Pressure – When applying pressure to stop massive bleeds, use both hands, and put all of your weight into your hands with your shoulders. Sometimes even using a knee to apply direct pressure may help depending on the location of the bleed.
To learn more, sign up for the class.