Design and implementation of the Western Pennsylvania regional Stop the Bleed initiative

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Abstract

BACKGROUND

Hemorrhage is the leading cause of preventable death in trauma, and nearly 40% of prehospital deaths can be attributed to blood loss. The Stop the Bleed program provides a structured curriculum for teaching hemorrhage control and the use of bleeding control kits. To overcome implementation barriers and to achieve the goal of making education on bleeding control as common as cardiopulmonary resuscitation, widespread implementation with outreach to the public and law enforcement is necessary.

METHODS

We provide a description and analysis of the implementation of a regional Stop the Bleed program, which includes a step-by-step guide to the design of this program provided as a template to guide attempts at large-scale Stop the Bleed program development.

RESULTS

Combining the efforts of regional trauma and nontrauma centers as a hub-and-spoke design, a region covering four states, 72 counties, and 30,000 square miles was targeted. A total of 27,291 individuals were trained in a 21-month period including 3,172 trainers, 19,310 lay public, and 4,809 law enforcement officers. A total of 436 bleeding control kits were distributed to 102 public schools, and tourniquets were provided to 4,809 law enforcement officers. Program development and community outreach resulted in official recognition of the program by the Pennsylvania State Senate.

CONCLUSIONS

With the use of a multicenter outreach program design with emphasis on law enforcement and public education while developing a train-the-trainer program, widespread and rapid dissemination of Stop the Bleed teaching is feasible. The general steps described in this manuscript may serve as a template for new or developing programs in other areas to increase the national exposure to Stop the Bleed.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE

Economic/Decision study, level IV.

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