Newswise — Bethesda, Md. – In response to the humanitarian crisis in Eastern Europe, several centers at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU) have developed Ukrainian-translated resources for traumatic blood loss and mental health.
USU’s National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health (NCDMPH) has translated its lifesaving Stop the Bleed video into Ukrainian closed captioning. The five-minute Stop the Bleed video is designed to teach the lay person how to stop traumatic bleeding – be it from a natural disaster, an accident, or a violent attack – in hopes of saving lives from major trauma. The video, also available in eight other languages, explains how to evaluate whether bleeding is life-threatening, and how to determine whether an injury requires direct pressure or pressure via tourniquet. It then explains how to properly use either a commercial tourniquet, or if one is not available, how to make-shift one.
“Stop the Bleed” is a White House-launched effort between several federal and civilian agencies, including USU. The initiative launched in 2015 to teach citizens how to save lives from major trauma the same way bystanders would administer CPR to someone in cardiac arrest. Unlike other public education campaigns though, “Stop the Bleed” is based on important lessons learned on the battlefield and a decade of research by the U.S. military. Researchers found that equipping troops with individual first aid kits that contain tourniquets and hemostatic dressings to control severe blood loss, combined with training on hemorrhage control for medical and non-medical forces alike, paid off. Thousands of lives have been saved by these techniques on the battlefield.
"We know that rapid bleeding control, with tourniquets and direct pressure, has saved the lives of injured Americans – both on and off the battlefield,” said Dr. Craig Goolsby, NCDMPH’s science director. “We hope this translated video, and the information it contains, can save the lives of Ukrainians who are suffering from the terrible wounds of war.”
USU’s Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress (CSTS) has also developed a response page offering Ukrainian-translated mental health resources. Additional versions in Russian and Polish will soon be made available, too. These resources offer information for mental health providers and those working directly with those impacted in Ukraine. They also offer information for families, such as how to talk help children understand frightening events, and how to manage stress in children after a crisis.
“The invasion of Ukraine has created a humanitarian crisis, leading to injury, displacement, and death impacting millions. The behavioral and psychological effects of war are far-reaching and long-lasting. Interventions which focus on sustaining safety, connectedness, calming, abilities to problem solve, and hope can be especially important during this time. The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress has developed resources that are evidence-based and easy to use, which provide actionable guidance to address these areas and reduce distress and optimize functioning for communities affected by the war in Ukraine. These resources have been translated into Ukrainian, with versions in Polish and Russian quickly forthcoming and have been widely distributed to our DoD deployed service members and to Ukrainian care takers." said U.S. Public Health Service Capt. (Dr.) Joshua C. Morganstein, deputy director, CSTS and vice chair, Department of Psychiatry, USU.
Additionally, at the request of the American Psychological Association’s Division 19 (military psychology) for the APA’s Office of International Affairs, USU’s Center for Deployment Psychology (CDP) has developed a webpage that is a collection of resources for health care providers in wartime. Among the items included are UNICEF’s “Supporting your child during a bombing,” Sesame Workshop’s content on dealing with grief and injuries, the FOCUS Project’s family resilience training, resources from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, Military Child Education Coalition, the Trauma Institute, CSTS, and more. These resources have been shared with the Ukrainian Psychological Association by the APA.
“Tens of thousands of Ukrainians have been suddenly called to service for their country and deployed to the front lines. Civilian psychologists across Ukraine are struggling to support these ‘suddenly military families’ and to address deployment issues impacting families, spouses and children. All of the deployment issues that we've seen here in the U.S. over the last 20 years have been compacted into a few weeks in Ukraine and multiplied by being in the warzone and exacerbated by the lack of communication networks. Many Ukrainian civilian psychologists are also being called upon to directly support military units and to address acute combat trauma and traumatic brain injuries with little to no training or resources. The CDP continues to work with APA and other organizations to create, translate and disseminate these much needed resources to providers in Ukraine,” said Dr. William Brim, Executive Director, CDP, and associate professor, Department of Medical and Clinical Psychology at USU.
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About the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences: The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, founded by an act of Congress in 1972, is the nation’s federal health sciences university and the academic heart of the Military Health System. USU students are primarily active-duty uniformed officers in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Public Health Service who receive specialized education in tropical and infectious diseases, TBI and PTSD, disaster response and humanitarian assistance, global health, and acute trauma care. USU also has graduate programs in oral biology, biomedical sciences and public health committed to excellence in research. The University's research program covers a wide range of areas important to both the military and public health. For more information about USU and its programs, visit www.usuhs.edu.