Spectrum News 1: "We Can't Fix Dead"
Life threatening bleeding emergencies can happen anywhere. It happened recently at Thomas Worthington High School.
As over 150 faculty and staff members from the Worthington School District, along with 30 students gathered in the Thomas Worthington auditorium on a recent evening, they heard a story from a colleague about a student-athlete who had tripped and fallen into a window during indoor track practice. The glass cut into an artery, causing a serious and bloody injury that needed immediate attention.
Fortunately, one of his teammates, a lifeguard by training, knew exactly what to do. He took a t-shirt and packed the wound, holding pressure on it until paramedics arrived. With this type of injury, a victim can bleed out and die within minutes. His friend saved his life – because he had the proper training and was able to stop the bleed.
It wasn’t a problem that the t-shirt wasn’t sterile, according to OhioHealth Grant Medical Center’s trauma outreach coordinator, Stacey Wickham, who teaches Stop the Bleed courses.
"It doesn't matter if it's clean or not because they're going to get washed out and get antibiotics at the hospital and if they bleed out and lose their blood volume because you didn't pack that wound because you didn't have anything clean, we can't fix dead," she said.
Now, other teachers and students also know what to do. Members from the OhioHealth Trauma team taught the free, hands-on course called “Stop the Bleed,” teaching them how to pack wounds and apply tourniquets. Spectrum News 1 was on-site to cover the event.
"The kids have opened up to us. You can tell that they've built that trust with their teachers and with the school to ask the real questions and let us know that this is kind of scary, but [ask], 'What would we do?'" math teacher Mallory Tecklenburg told Spectrum News 1 reporter Chuck Ringwalt.
It’s not just falls. Training like this can help in the event of a school shooting or car accident – any major bleeding situation.
"It was important for me to be prepared for that bad incident to occur, which hopefully it never does, but if it were to occur at this school, I'd want to be ready," freshman student Josh Hickman told Ringwalt.
“I think not just school shootings, but also say somebody accidentally cuts them-self on something or purposely cut something, it's really helpful to have that knowledge that probably most of our peers will not have," added freshman Gloria Chan.
To learn more about Stop the Bleed, including how to schedule a free course for your school, place of worship or other organization, click here.