“When You Stop the Bleed, You Save a life”: Hartford Consensus IV Focuses on Immediate Responders

March 30, 2016 | Risk Management News

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​Bystanders represent an underutilized resource in national preparedness and resilience to mass shooting events, said the Hartford Consensus IV, published by The Joint Committee to Create a National Policy to Enhance Survivability from Intentional Mass Casualty and Active Shooter Events. The guiding principle of the Hartford Consensus is that no victim should die from uncontrolled bleeding. Early Hartford Consensus reports focused on improvements to the roles of professional responders. The third Hartford Consensus found that the public would be willing to act as responders in an intentional mass casualty event. The authors said that harnessing the power of bystanders, or immediate responders, is not a new idea. For instance, immediate responders have been known to successfully administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) during events of nonhospital cardiac arrest. Also, tactical combat casualty care is taught not just to medics, but to all troops, in Iraq and Afghanistan, in order to control external hemorrhaging when unit members are injured.

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