Stopping the bleeding: New survey will benchmark current LEO TEMS readiness

Submitted by:
Doug Wyllie, PoliceOne Editor in Chief


05/24/2012

I was recently speaking with a newfound contact in law enforcement — in fact, he’s connected with the Fire and EMS disciplines as well — who was telling me about a 400-sworn police agency in the middle of the country at which every patrol officer is fully-EMS trained. 

That’s not likely to be the case in your agency, but it begs the question: Are you confident you’ve had an adequate level of training (and have the necessary equipment) to render life-saving aid to yourself or a fellow officer so that you/they have a fighting chance until EMS can get to the scene? 

In one of the recent editions of Force Science News, my friend and PoliceOne colleague Chuck Remsberg asks a similar question: “What’s your experience with controlling bleeding in the field?”

This isn’t so much a “tip” in the classic sense, but indirectly, with your participation in a brief five-minute survey, we may ultimately save the lives of countless officers. 

I’m hopeful we can enlist as many PoliceOne Members as possible to participate in a new survey — conducted in association with The VALOR Project — which stands to benchmark current LEO TEMS capabilities. This important effort can help to determine what needs to be done — from both a training and equipment standpoint — to better prepare our officers out on the streets. 

The survey is being conducted by Dr. Matt Sztajnkrycer, a Force Science Certification Course instructor, Minnesota SWAT doc, and Mayo Clinic researcher, in partnership with Detective John Landry of the Hillsboro Beach (Fla.) Police Department.  It is intended better understand “the methods and need for bleeding control in law enforcement circumstances,” Remsberg wrote. 

Among the questions you’ll be asked are things like:

What training have you received for controlling hemorrhaging from wounds to yourself or fellow officers?
What equipment do you carry for such a challenge?
What field experiences have you had where controlling blood loss was critical before the arrival of EMS?

“The responses we get will help determine the simplest means, the most effective equipment, and the least perishable training for stopping life-threatening bleeding under conditions of active threat,” Sztajnkrycer told Remsberg in Force Science News #203.

The survey is anonymous, and you can answer as many of the questions as you wish. 

Let’s face it, the response time of available EMS resources is not always immediate. Sometimes it’s longer than ten minutes. We’ve seen research which indicates that most gunshot trauma victims have five minutes to be stabilized from life-threatening injuries. After that first five minutes, the victim of a life-threatening gunshot wound has significantly diminished chances of survival.

Hopefully, with enough responses to the survey being conducted by Sztajnkrycer and Landry, we can create an unstoppable momentum toward equipping every officer in America with the same training and equipment as the abovementioned agency.  


Doug Wyllie is Editor in Chief of PoliceOne, responsible for setting the editorial direction of the website and managing the planned editorial features by our roster of expert writers. In addition to his editorial and managerial responsibilities, Doug has authored more than 750 feature articles and tactical tips on a wide range of topics and trends that affect the law enforcement community.

On a daily basis, Doug is in close personal contact with some of the top subject-matter experts in law enforcement, regularly tapping into the world-class knowledge of officers and trainers from around the United States, and working to help spread that information and insight to the hundreds of thousands of officers who visit PoliceOne every month.

Doug is a member of International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), and an Associate Member of the California Peace Officers' Association. He is also a member of the Public Safety Writers Association, and is a three-time (2011, 2012, and 2014) Western Publishing Association "Maggie Award" Finalist in the category of Best Regularly Featured Digital Edition Column.

Even in his "spare" time, he is active in his support for the law enforcement community, contributing his time and talents toward police-related charitable events as well as participating in force-on-force training, search-and-rescue training, and other scenario-based training designed to prepare cops for the fight they face every day on the street.

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