The Deep East Texas Regional Advisory Council for EMS and Trauma secured a Texas grant to purchase 250 tourniquets, 10 of which were donated to the SFA Sports Medicine training staff Tuesday, July 24.
Chairman of the council Scott Christopher, RN, explains the tourniquets and how they will be effective.
“If I have a lot of bleeding, putting pressure on it [the wound] won’t control it. If you put the tourniquets on, they can save a patient’s life and keep them from bleeding to death before the ambulance even get there,” Christopher said.
“Our goal with these tourniquets, is to get them on the streets, into the hands of the providers that are most likely to use them. So hospital people will have access to them, we’ll be giving some to the EMS providers that don’t already have access to them, we’ll be giving some to the volunteer fire departments, law enforcement guys.”
Christopher emphasized that if there is an accidental event on campus, sports medicine students can help victims if they have the tool on them.
“The goal is to have the tool readily available for someone who is unfortunately a victim in an intentional event or accidental event, if we’re bleeding to death, hopefully one of these trainers are close by with this tool that can throw it on our arm or leg and slow our bleeding down and let us get to the hospital,” Christopher said.
AJ Van Valkenburgh, head athletic trainer for the university, is hopeful for the future of the sports medicine department.
“I think there’s not enough money to go around. Sometimes you need donations to be able to help important causes, not only in our profession but in life. We have an opportunity and a profession that we’re in, that we’re typically a first responder. These tourniquets and the things that are donated to our staff are sometimes things that we can’t afford as a department to have on hand, but it’s something that’s extremely useful from a first responder standpoint to be able to provide that care, with the day and age that we’re in and the shootings and all the things that happen, it allows for us to do the very best we can.”
“We need to do as much as we can to prepare for it [traumatic events]. It’s a very simple solution to that,” Van Valkenburgh said.
Aidan Poole, human performance graduate student from Weatherford, is one of the students that will be using a tourniquet.
“It sets me up to be a better athletic trainer. We are the first responders a lot of times, so having another skill-set that could save a life, specifically possibly off the field, I think it expands our ability to be healthcare providers for all populations and not athletes,” Poole said.