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Celebrating EMS Week 2024 – Day 5: Save-A-Life Day

It’s on agencies to provide opportunities for community members to learn the skills needed to potentially save the life of a stranger or loved one

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In early 2023, NFL player Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field after a sudden cardiac arrest. The emergency response and his subsequent health rebound put EMS in the spotlight; suddenly, discussions on the importance of early CPR and AED training for the public were hot topics. For the 2023-24 NFL season, Hamlin’s return to the gridiron continued to fuel respect for the first responders on scene that fateful day and the impact of their quick actions.

Similarly, though a darker catalyst, the increased frequency of mass casualty incidents and the accompanying publicity demonstrates a need for community members to be prepared to act in the event of an emergency – to save a life.

The goal of today’s theme is empowerment; it’s up to you as an EMS provider to empower local citizens to learn the skills needed to potentially save the life of a stranger or loved one in an emergency.

During critical moments before professional medical assistance arrives, every second counts. EMS providers could be delayed by demand or an active threat. By equipping community members with the basic skills and information needed to respond effectively in the moment, we empower them to become active participants in the chain of survival.

Check out our “EMS Week: Save-A-Life” video, as well as gathered resources to help your communities stand ready, take action and make a life-saving impact.

Citizen emergency training
As providers, we may think of ourselves as the first professionals to begin emergency care, but many lifesaving interventions these days are a function of bystander care; Stop the Bleed, bystander CPR and public access defibrillation. Share these educational resources to empower community members to take action.
Follow these tips to make BLS Healthcare Provider class memorable and effective for students
Prehospital care experts stress the importance of the Stop the Bleed initiative, preparing bystanders to control severe hemorrhage and securing funding for a statewide program
Teaching CPR hones teaching, public speaking and audience engagement skills
Citizens are the force multipliers of public safety, and have the potential to save lives before EMS arrives
Diffusing and debriefing lay responders can mitigate traumatic stress and reduce the risk of post-traumatic injury from the experience of performing CPR
Every song on our list falls within the recommended 100 to 120 bpm range to perform CPR
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.

Rachel Engel is an award-winning journalist and the senior editor of FireRescue1.com and EMS1.com. In addition to her regular editing duties, Engel seeks to tell the heroic, human stories of first responders and the importance of their work. She earned her bachelor’s degree in communications from Cameron University in Lawton, Oklahoma, and began her career as a freelance writer, focusing on government and military issues. Engel joined Lexipol in 2015 and has since reported on issues related to public safety. Engel lives in Wichita, Kansas. She can be reached via email.

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