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WCTV: Florida surgeons give gift of life through ‘Stop the Bleed’

Thursday, February 01, 2018

By: Brittany Bedi

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) — The Florida Capitol was bustling Wednesday as members from the Florida chapter of the American College of Surgeons were out in full force to educate people about proper wound care.

It’s part of the “Stop the Bleed” initiative.

The American College of Surgeons performed studies of shooting incidents and learned that many people unnecessarily died because bystanders did not know how to give proper first aid to the injured person.

“I think most people in the public are a little reticent about it, because it’s something that kind of scares them and people feel squeamish,” said Patricia Byers, president of the Florida Chapter of the American College of Surgeons.

She noted that the advice doesn’t only apply to gunshot victims. It can help injured pedestrians, glass injuries, and more.

“When you’re in a situation, in a life or death situation, you don’t want to feel helpless,” said Byers. “I’m sure no one wants to feel helpless, so we’re trying to give people the tools to save a fellow human being.”

It took a few minutes for each person to learn how to address a bleeding wound.

Instructors used a plastic model of a wound. Each person would put gauze in the wound and apply pressure to it. They also demonstrated how to put a tourniquet on an arm or leg and secure it. Following those steps can stop bleeding until first responders can arrive.

After a person successfully treated the simulated wound, a certificate of completion was presented from the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma.

‘Stop the Bleed’ is one of multiple outreach projects by the American College of Surgeons. The Florida branch of the organization hopes to be able to eventually provide wound kits to schools.

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