DuBOIS — On a teacher in-service day just before DuBois Area School District students started the 2018-19 school year, four instructors from DuSAN Ambulance trained staff members on how to stop life-threatening bleeding until medical help arrives.
It’s part of Stop the Bleed, a national awareness campaign intended to cultivate grassroots efforts that encourage bystanders to become trained, equipped and empowered to help in emergencies.
Initially, Assistant Superintendent Wendy Benton and a few other members of the administrative staff participated in a Stop the Bleed training with the district’s School Police Officers. The training was coordinated by SPO Dennis McFadden.
“After participating in the training, we felt compelled to provide training opportunities to everyone in our district,” said Benton. “At that point, we partnered with Dawn Buck at DuSAN Ambulance and scheduled an entire day of one-hour voluntary training sessions for our staff. I’m incredibly proud to share that 395 out of 516 DASD staff members completed the training. The staff’s commitment to our community is unmatched.”
Benton said several members of the district’s custodial/maintenance staff participated in the training, as well, just in case of work-related injuries.
Additionally, the DuSAN training team has partnered with Mike Yamrick’s fifth- and sixth-grade health and first aid classes at the DuBois Area Middle School to provide additional training opportunities for students.
“I fully support Officer in Charge Janice Bart’s philosophy that school safety is a shared responsibility and we are committed to providing opportunities to help better prepare our staff in responding to emergency situations,” said Benton.
On Thursday, Dawn Buck, DuSAN’s director of compliance and education, presented the district’s certified school nurses six Stop the Bleed kits, which will be dispersed to the high school, the middle school and all four of the elementary schools.
Each kit, which costs $400 each, was donated by UPMC, said Buck, noting that the kits include three tourniquets, three QuikClot packets, some compression bandage, scissors, gloves.
“Everything they would need in case of a bleeding emergency,” Buck said.
The district’s certified nurses, Kim Thomas, Melissa Lingenfelter and Amy McCullough, appreciate having the kits available to all of the schools.
“Just the confidence of knowing that we have them as a resource is great,” said Thomas.
“It’ll keep all of our students and staff safe,” said McCullough.
“We appreciate the training and that so many of our staff members are now trained to be able to help us in any kind of situation that may arise,” said Lingenfelter.
McFadden noted that there is a corporal in the eastern part of the state that saved himself using the tourniquet.
“We are most grateful to Dawn Buck and the training team at DuSAN Ambulance for their service to our community as well as their support of our school district,” Benton said. “The donation of Stop the Bleed kits, for every school, provides an additional resource to assist us in the event of a bleeding emergency. The safety and security of our staff will always be our top priority.”