While the argument wages on over how to stop gun violence and mass shootings, health professionals focus on what they can do: keep wounded people from dying.
Dr. Stephen Flaherty, the trauma director at Del Sol Medical Center, told ABC-7 that he is eager to teach anyone and everyone how to stop life-threatening bleeding, especially in light of the deadly shooting at the Cielo Vista-area Walmart on Aug. 3 where 22 people were killed and 26 others were injured.
“After an event happens in any city or town, it becomes much more in people’s mind that they need to be prepared,” Flaherty said. “How do you take care of the person next to you?”
Flaherty served 22 years in the military, and he says life-saving techniques once just needed on the battlefield are now also critical in civilian life.
“We are talking about life or death,” Flaherty said. “These are the kind of injuries that can cause death in moments. Five to ten minutes can cause loss of enough blood to cause a person to die.”
The surgeon demonstrated one technique — packing a wound — on a foam roll designed to look like an injured appendage.
“Anything that’s fabric, you can use to put in the wound,” he said as he stuffed long strips of gauze into a hole that resembled a gunshot wound. “Apply pressure and compress. Or, you can use your own t-shirt,” he added.
WATCH BELOW: HOW TO STOP THE BLEED