Letter: Stop the Bleed Training

Stop the Bleed

HJL, Recently the University of Washington’s Harborview Hospital  has begun teaching bleeding control to healthcare providers as well as ordinary citizens. WHH is the nearest Level 1 Trauma Center in most of the northwest, including Idaho and Montana. The class is called Stop The Bleed. The idea is that-just like everyone should know CPR- everyone should know how to stop severe bleeding. The class is about 2 hours, divided between lecture and hands on training.

The class teaches how to recognize life threatening bleeding and proper usage of tourniquets. Which ones to purchase, and how to properly use wound packing/compression bandaging is also covered. I thought it was extremely well done and a “must do” for anyone who may be on their own when someone might bleed to death (it only takes 3-5 minutes). Right now in the northwest, I believe that it’s only being offered in Washington State. But the plan is to take it regionally and nationally.


  1. In Arkansas, all law enforcement officers are being taught to apply tournament to gunshot wounds on extremities whenever possible. This is based on the military’s experiences in Afghanistan and Iraq. There TQ’s have been left in place for as much as ten hours, controlling bleeds until the patient is in the OR and receiving medical treatment.
    In a SHTF situation, a gunshot wound is probably fatal barring treatment of some sort. A tournament combined with Qwik Clot and an Israeli bandage offers time to find that treatment.

  2. Denver International Airport has been teaching the Stop The Bleed program for 2 years now with over 400 employees trained. In addition they have placed 2 bleeding control kits in every AED box throughout the airport as well as well-stocked trauma kits in all the airport operations and LEO vehicles. Most of the LEO’s in the region have take the 8-hour version of the course as well and there have been about 8-12 ‘saves’ (mostly LEO’s) because of the application of tourniquets.

  3. Trouble is the training is on hold until the fall. According to the website there was a training class last weekend and there are no more scheduled. Regrettably, the powers that be here in the Northwest have wonderful ideas but usually forget how to pay for them. A familiar scenario.

  4. I am the director of an ED at a Level One Trauma Center in SW Virginia and we have been teaching Stop the Bleed for about 6 months now. Cannot recommend the training enough. Proper tourniquet technique in a critical situation, active shooter, industrial accident or MVC can be a difference between life and death. Most of the supplies are cheap and easy to obtain. Place in a small bag on the outside of a trauma/first aid kit for easy access.

    Be safe and god Bless,

  5. Similar training is available in Alaska through the Department of Health and Socia Services. The class is four hours long and titled “BCon”. While the target audience is first responders, the general public is welcome in most classes.

  6. This training is available in Flathead county, Montana, and has been held at local fire departments here for the EMS crews and is also open to the public. If you live in the area and can attend, particularly if they’ll have the squirting femoral artery manikin that you practice putting homeostatic gauze into, I highly recommend it. The product rep for Quick-Clot teaches the classes here, I don’t want to post his contact info publicly here, but I’m sure you can find it if you look…

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