A $149,334 grant from Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s Blue and You Foundation has been doled to the Stop Bleeding Foundation, a Jonesboro non-profit presided over by Dr. Spencer Guinn. It will be used to train about 600 police officers and firemen, across the “Northeast Arkansas Trauma Zone.”
The zone extends from Randolph and Clay counties on the Missouri border and south to Phillips County. It includes the majority of the Arkansas Delta region. The grant is given annually to non-profit and government organizations and programs that positively impact the health of Arkansans.
“This grant will allow for 600 more trained officers to assist in an emergency until professional EMS arrives,” Guinn said. “There is no doubt that lives will be saved in Northeast Arkansas as a result of this.”
This grant money will be used to train law enforcement officers and firefighters in life-saving medical techniques. Each will attend an eight-hour law enforcement and first responder tactical emergency casualty care course at no cost to their department. Upon completion of the course, they will receive free Individual first aid kits to carry on and off duty.
While all Jonesboro firefighters are trained in Guinn’s program, Police Chief Rick Elliott said only a small percentage of JPD officers carry and are trained in the use of tourniquets. Elliott said all his officers will finally have Individual first aid kits.
“We’ve put tourniquets on people, and that’s a big part of the kits,” Elliott said. “We’ve had three tourniquet saves this year. Without those, there would be three deaths. If you sever an artery, you’ll bleed out in three-to-five minutes and never make it to the ER. That means more lives will be saved.”
Jonesboro Fire Chief Kevin Miller said the grant will help continue JFD’s work with this program.
“We’ve been working with Dr. Guinn and his program for the last year and hope to continue and expand this program,” he said.