'Stop the Bleed' campaign helps trauma experts teach to save lives

- With the frequency of shootings with mass casualties that have taken place, including the one on Tuesday afternoon on the YouTube campus in San Bruno, Bay Area trauma experts say everyone can help save the life of a gunshot victim.

At Marin General Hospital in Greenbrae, emergency room nurses who are part of the national program Stop the Bleed say everyone can easily be trained to help save lives. Trauma experts say the YouTube shooting is a reminder of how common gun violence has become.

"I don't think the shootings are going to stop. But what can stop is the death from the shootings," said Michelle Tracy, Marin General Hospital's director of emergency and trauma services. 

Stop the Bleed, launched in 2015, teaches bystanders, including school children how to save lives from blood loss before first responders arrive at a scene. 

Experts say the steps are easy.

"Say this is a wound and it's bleeding. You're going to then hold pressure for ten minutes," said

Meaghan Carroll, Marin General Hospital's trauma program manager. She says if the wound is still bleeding after pressure is applied for ten minutes, stuff the wound with a cloth.

"You're going to pack the wound and you're going to put it all the way into it and you're going to hold pressure." 

If the bleeding doesn't stop, the next step is to apply a tourniquet. A piece of cloth could also work. You wrap it around a wound that's on the victim's arms or legs. Avoid the joints. 

"Just put it on kind of like a belt. The point of the tourniquet is to stop the bleeding from occurring. Now the rod locks into the lock," said Carroll. 

The tourniquet works only on wounds to the arms and legs. For other areas such as the head, neck and torso, apply pressure with a cloth. 

The key, like the name of the program, is to "Stop the Bleed." 

"If you hit an artery, somebody can bleed out in two minutes. That's why it's so important pressure ...bleeding control. we can save a lot of lives," said Tracy. 

Trauma experts say the goal is to make this training as common as CPR. To find out where you can receive training and to get stop the bleed kids, go to www.bleedingcontrol.org
 

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