STOP THE BLEED training saved lives from Sierra Leone to Connecticut
STOP THE BLEED training saved lives from Sierra Leone to Connecticut

STOP THE BLEED training saved lives from Sierra Leone to Connecticut. Photo credit: American College of Surgeons

The STOP THE BLEED course teaches a skill with life-saving potential that is easy to learn and globally relevant. Two studies presented at the 2020 American College of Surgeons (ACS) Clinical Convention show that STOP THE BLEED training is effective and has made a life-saving difference around the world.

In one study, 121 hours of nursing students at Kabala Nursing School in rural Sierra Leone were taught a one-hour STOP THE BLEED course. After a year, participants were surveyed to find out if they had any bleeding emergencies and if they were able to use bleeding control techniques. 76 people responded to the survey and reported a total of 190 encounters with life-threatening bleeding situations.

The most common injuries that required bleeding control were motorcycle collisions (34 percent), knife wounds (19 percent), and car accidents (13 percent). Participants said they used wound packaging (41 percent), direct printing (26 percent), and tourniquet applications (20 percent) the most. Because they were able to intervene, nearly all patients (94 percent) survived, with a majority (82 percent) reporting to the hospital for further medical care.

"People are given basic medical knowledge that is essential. With or without a medical background, they can use that knowledge to save a life," said Samba Jalloh, MB, ChB, of the College of Medicine and Allied Health Sciences, Freetown. Sierra Leone.

In low to middle income countries (LMIC), access to health care can be sporadic and the burden of injury can be significant. The results of this study provide evidence that STOP THE BLEED training in LMICs can be performed with continued success in treating bleeding emergencies before a patient can be transported to hospital.

"The risks here are many. Transportation is not very safe and hospitals can be far from villages. Knowing how to stop the bleeding is very important. People use the ability to save lives," said Dr . Jalloh.

STOP THE BLEED training saved lives from Sierra Leone to Connecticut. Photo credit: American College of Surgeons

The researchers emphasized that these results demonstrate tremendous life-saving applicability of STOP THE BLEED training in Sierra Leone. They noted that future studies should focus on the specifics of adapting the bleeding control for use in other LMICs.

"With the efforts of Dr. Jalloh, the course has become a compulsory part of home staff training in Freetown. The successful use of techniques and the proliferation of courses have encouraged us to look at ways to improve bleeding control training in the United States and in the United States Think Abroad. Support These Findings Another focus is on life-saving preclinical procedures and is a great example of sustained, two-way global surgical teamwork, "said lead study author Vennila Padmanaban, MD, a surgeon at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School in Newark.

In another study by researchers in Connecticut, participants in the STOP THE BLEED course demonstrated a strong knowledge of bleeding control after a year, and the course participants, including previously untrained participants, reported that they successfully used bleeding control techniques to save lives.

"In our study, people aged 14 and 64 reported using bleeding control skills. Eight of these people had never had previous bleeding control training and seven of the people who used these skills were not first responders or healthcare professionals." said lead study author Jeremy Fridling, a fourth-year medical student at Frank H. Netter Medical School at Quinnipiac University in North Haven, Conn.

Researchers tracked 1,030 STOP THE BLEED course participants and conducted surveys before and after the course, and six and twelve months later. Of those surveyed, 31 participants (8.4 percent) applied bleeding control skills to live victims, with 29 (93.5 percent) reporting a successful outcome.

In the post-course surveys, the average response was between "agree" and "strongly agree" for confidence in knowledge and skills. Notably, the mean response (on a scale of 1 to 5) increased significantly from before (4.1) to after (4.6), six months (4.4), and twelve months (4.5) to willingness to enter Treating victims with severe bleeding.

"This study is a confirmation that normal, normal people – if you train them and give them a chance and empower them to do a public good and stop bleeding – can stop bleeding with a successful outcome," said study co-author Lenworth Jacobs , MD. MPH, FACS, Professor of Surgery at the University of Connecticut and Medical Director of the ACS STOP THE BLEED program.


According to surveys, most Americans feel unprepared to help victims after a mass accident


More information:
Bleeding Control Training in West Africa: A Year of Encounters, Interventions and Results. Scientific forum. American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress 2020.

Saved lives and public qualification one year after bleeding control training. Scientific forum. American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress 2020.

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