Local officials learn how to “Stop the Bleed” on life-threatening bleeding wounds

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A gunman recently opened fire in Jacksonville, Florida – killing two and injuring nine. 

This as the number of mass shootings continue to rise across the country.

Here in Acadiana, health officials are doing what they can to “stop the bleed.”

It’s a national initiative to train law enforcement on treating life-threatening bleeding wounds.  

STEFANSKI: “In a mass casualty situation it may be several minutes before EMS can get to the scene or it’s safe for them to enter. Law enforcement may be the first person to encounter that individual.”

Trauma program manager Jacqueline Venable is training the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office.

VENABLE: “It’s to assist them in case they’re ever shot but also in the event they come across someone who is shot or anybody with significant bleeding that they can help control until EMS can get there and that patient can be transported.”

Health officials teach them how to use their hands to apply pressure on a bleeding wound, how and when to apply dressings or packing and when and how to apply a tourniquet.  

Megan: We do have a tourniquet here can you explain how this works?
Nurse Betsy Welsch assist in the stop the bleed.

Betsy: They are only for extremity wounds. 
WELCH: If you’re questioning it, just apply it. You want to always make sure you go red to the heart and put it two to three inches of where the wound is. 

Dr. Tina Stefanski with the office of public health warns not to use a homemade tourniquet, such as a belt or string – but the real thing. 

STEFANSKI: The goal is that people will think of this as we do of CPR. We want to get this out to everyone. It’s just another life saving measure that lay people can take advantage of. 

Because stopping the bleed in time, can be a matter of life or death.

In Lafayette, Megan Kelly, KLFY News 10.

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