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  • Writer's pictureKaralynn Cromack

The Recent Program that Allows Chicago Bystanders to be Life Savers

When living in a city of over 2.5 million people, you never know what kind of trouble you may encounter. In emergency medical situations, bystander intervention can mean the difference between life and death. Being familiar with CPR or the Heimlich maneuver is absolutely helpful, but there are also resources set aside for instances of stabbing, gunshot wounds, or extreme trauma, which bystanders should be aware of.

Although shootings overall have gone down in 2023, there have been 2,417 victims (both fatal and non-fatal) within Chicago as of January, according to the government of Chicago’s official website

Something that the city has been able to do to take action is provide the resource of Bleeding Control Kits/STOP THE BLEED® kits in collaboration with the American College of Surgeons Committee. Since 2015, when the White House launched the STOP THE BLEED® campaign, the program has grown within Chicago, with 550 kits available across 350 different locations.

Map of Bleeding Control Kits in Chicago

These kits are usually located in high-traffic areas like malls, education centers, transportation hubs, and public areas such as churches. Some sort of background medical knowledge may be useful in efforts to administer aid, but bleeding control kits come with instructions for anyone to use. Along with instructions, the components within the basic kits include essentials such as tourniquets, emergency trauma dressing, gauze, trauma shears, gloves, a marker, and a survival blanket.

While the American College of Surgeons and Safe Chicago work together to recommend STOP THE BLEED® kits be present in every work facility, they also offer free 90-minute courses to be better informed on dealing with traumatic blood loss. Every step towards information and resources is a step towards a better future in which Chicago locals are confident in their ability to look out for each other.



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