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Wis. student works to bring Stop the Bleed to high school

Torin Slaughter is raising money to install about 100 Stop the Bleed kits at Case High School

By Ryan Patterson
The Journal Times

MOUNT PLEASANT, Wis. — Torin Slaughter took Stop the Bleed training in January with a few dozen classmates.

In about an hour, high schoolers learned options for what to do if someone is bleeding from a serious injury. Those include calling 911, applying pressure to a wound, packing a wound and using a tourniquet.

Knowing how to help prevent blood loss in those types of emergency situations could be the difference between life and death, as it could provide time for first responders to arrive and treat the injured person.

Stop the Bleed, a program through the American College of Surgeons is intended to provide basic skills to people of all ages with no medical background.

May is National Stop the Bleed Month.

Stop the Bleed kits
Two identical Stop The Bleed modules come in a compact kit that fits into most existing AED cabinets.
Contains a chest seal, tourniquet, bandage, gauze, gloves, shears, marker and instructions.
Includes a military-style combat tourniquet, compressed gauze bandages and a chest seal.
Comes with a tourniquet, an Israeli pressure bandage, 2 compression gauze, a mylar survival blanket, shears, gloves, a permanent marker and 3 antiseptic wipes.
Includes a tourniquet, compressed gauze, trauma dressing, gloves (latex and powder free), trauma shears, a survival blanket and a permanent marker.
8 individual IFAKs each contain the essential tools to address severe bleeding. QuikLitters are also included.

Slaughter, a senior at Case High School, was not aware of Stop the Bleed training prior to doing it. Afterward, she spoke with peers about how crucial yet seemingly unknown it is.

“This is really important training that nobody really knows about,” Slaughter said. “After we took that class, it was like, ‘Let’s do something about it.’”

She has done something about it as part of her biomedical pathway capstone project.

The project aims to increase awareness about Stop the Bleed, raise money to put Stop the Bleed kits in every Case classroom and have all Case staff receive Stop the Bleed training.

By working with several area organizations in the past few months, Slaughter appears close to making those goals a reality.

“It’s been hectic, but also it’s been fun,” Slaughter said.

Slaughter is raising money to install about 100 Stop the Bleed kits at the school this summer. Zero Case classrooms currently have the kits.

“We hope we never have to use these kits, but they are life-saving,” said Ben Mieloszyk, Mount Pleasant Police Department officer and Case school resource officer.

Stop the Bleed training for Case staff will likely take place in August before the start of the 2024-25 school year.

‘Paving the way’

Once Slaughter chose her capstone topic, Sara Gauthier, Case biomedical pathway instructor, reached out to Amy Moczynski, EMS coordinator at Aurora Medical Center — Mount Pleasant. Moczynski has served as Slaughter’s mentor and connected with other area entities to assist with the capstone project.

Moczynski said organizations were immediately receptive to Slaughter’s plans, and she appreciates collaborating with them to help the school and community.

One person Moczynski contacted was South Shore Fire Department Lt. Josh Jamison, who was “inspired” when he heard about Slaughter’s work.

“People like Torin are paving the way,” Jamison said. “We’ve been looking to support people like that for a long time.”

Labor unions for employees at MPPD and SSFD have contributed money and materials toward the kits, and SSFD and Aurora employees plan to train Case staff in August.

Kristin Gritzner, Ascension All Saints Hospital trauma coordinator, trained about 65 Case employees in Stop the Bleed this year, meaning about one-third of the school’s nearly 200 workers have done the training.

According to Slaughter, all Case seniors received Stop the Bleed training this school year.

Gritzner, who trained Slaughter and her classmates in January, said it is key to have Stop the Bleed kits “readily available” and people trained to use them. She said the training can apply in a variety of scenarios.

Slaughter plans to virtually attend the August training since she will be at college.

“We’re going to give her lots of credit for all this, because it’s all hers,” Moczynski said.

Slaughter has always liked science and enjoyed the variety of biomedical classes she took in high school. She plans to study biology at the University of Indianapolis and work as an orthopedic doctor or physician’s assistant.

Everyone expressed pride in Slaughter for leading the way on this crucial project.

Mieloszyk hopes bringing Stop the Bleed kits and training to Case will result in similar actions at other Racine Unified schools.

“As a public, we’re behind,” Mieloszyk said. “You don’t want to be behind, but it’s just the name of the game. No one wants to take this initiative and step forward, but (Slaughter) did. That says a lot about her.”

Jamison agreed and hopes Slaughter’s project “can be a huge catalyst” for RUSD and Racine County organizations.

“The more people you have trained, the more tools in the toolbox you have,” Jamison said. “You can’t put a price on sharing that knowledge, sharing that training.”

Tom Tuttle, principal of the Case Academy of Health, Education and IB leadership, called Slaughter an “amazing” person.

“She’s one of the kids that reminds us how lucky we are to be able to do this,” Tuttle said.

Slaughter said she wanted “to do something for the community” with her capstone project.

Through her efforts and the assistance of many people, she is doing just that.

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