A new Year, and a new beginning – and a new review!

Hello again, friends! I’m sure you have noticed by now that there has been a dearth of posts here at The Takedown, and although my reasons were good ones (life does that to you, sometimes) that’s something I intend to correct, starting today.

I am starting my classes today to become an EMT and, as such, have taken this month off as far as volunteering at our local ambulance corps. That time has proven, thus far, to be a great blessing to me as it has allowed me to do some “taking of stock,” as it were as to what I believe, why I believe it, and where I want to go. It’s reaffirmed to me that I want The Takedown to be a place of encouragement, of information, and of knowledge, instead of just another blog that gossips, posts about what I had this morning or what my children wore to school, or goes on endlessly about the current political/social justice issues. God knows there are enough of those around. I believe I had begun to lose that focus both here, and at my work, and am glad to have gotten my priorities straight again, thanks be to God! To that end I may go back and get rid of some old posts that do not serve that purpose; we’ll see.

And so without further ado, here we go!

In 2015, a campaign was launched entitled Stop The Bleed (https://www.dhs.gov/stopthebleed), and was aimed at informing (I loathe the word “empowering” due to its overuse) and giving bystanders the confidence to know what to do to help someone who may be experiencing serious or life threatening bleeding. It’s worth noting that, according to the Stop The Bleeding Coalition (http://stopthebleedingcoalition.org/):

  • Hemorrhaging is listed by the U.S. military as the #1 cause of preventable deaths on the battlefield
  • 35% of pre-hospital deaths are caused by hemorrhaging
  • 80% of mass casualty victims are delivered to medical facilities by non-ambulances

To that end, I began looking into what products may be out there that would help an average person in that situation. “Average” in this sense is by no means a pejorative, but instead is used to distinguish between those who (a) have medical training, (b) carry medical supplies in their vehicles or (c) both, and the average layperson who is generally not prepared and does not have any training. As things happened, I received an email from Amazon suggesting that I may be interested in the following item, which I ordered. It is the Adventure Medical Kits ‘Trauma Pak,’ and I will say that thus far, I am very impressed with it. Sealed in a waterproof bag and able to be fit into a cargo pants pocket, a large purse, glove compartment or backpack/bag, this would truly be an item I would include in my EDC (Every Day Carry) items, as well as my car and medical bag.

The listing for the Pak can be found here: https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B003BS2PW4/ref=sr_ph_1_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1483966878&sr=sr-1&keywords=trauma+pack

It contains the following items, in a package approximately 7″x5″ (the top portion of the package can be folded down, however, making the height somewhat less):

(1) QuikClot 25g (1) 5” x 9” Trauma Pad (1) Pair Nitrile Gloves, One Hand Wipe (1) 2” x 26” Duct Tape (1) Triangular Bandage (1) 4” x 4” Sterile Gauze Dressing Pkg./2 (1) 2” x 2” Sterile Gauze Dressing Pkg./2 (1) 3” Conforming Gauze Bandage (4) After Cuts & Scrapes Antiseptic Wipe (1) Resealable Bag for Bio-Waste and Sucking Chest Wounds

(QuikClot, for those who may not be familiar with it, is a line of FDA approved hemostatic agents that accelerate the body’s natural clotting factors without the use of animal or human proteins, shellfish or botanical agents, and thereby remove many of the causes of allergic reactions common to prior agents. For more information on Quikclot and how it works, feel free to look at http://quikclot.com/ )

If you are a hunter, a person who regularly visits the range, works outdoors or in any field that is prone to injury involving bleeding,  I would recommend this. Please note: this pack contains a QuikClot Trauma Pad. It is designed to be used externally, on the wound site and promoting clotting. If you are concerned about potentially deep wounds/bleeding, i.e. someone who is at an archery/gun range, consider adding a hemostatic gauze such as Celox Rapid Gauze to your kit. This gauze can literally be packed into a wound and has been shown to stop arterial bleeds in the battlefield. REMEMBER: Hemostatic agents are used IN CONJUNCTION WITH direct pressure, not IN PLACE OF it. This segues into the last point.

As marvelous as these items may be, nothing can surpass the value of training and watchfulness. If you decide to get this pak, or any other equipment such as this, familiarize yourself with it and how to use it. You can have all the lifesaving items in the world and if you don’t know how to use them, even in the most basic sense, your effectiveness is going to be severely curtailed. If you aren’t paying attention to what’s going on around you, chances are good you’re going to become a casualty and thereby not be in a position to help anyone else. Friends, we live in a violent world. We always have because it’s an endemic part of humanity and the human condition. We won’t legislate it away, and we won’t get rid of it by ‘just being nice to one another.’ Get some training. Pay attention. Be prepared, and have a plan. Become involved in something like Stop the Bleed, and pass the information on to your friends. Most of all, don’t be afraid to help.

God bless today, my friends.