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Equipping our communities with the tools to save lives in case of emergencies


  • Summer 2018: CHER Research Summer Program
  • Fall 2018 – present: Ongoing


The last decade has unfortunately seen a marked increase in mass casualty gun violence. Between 2015 to 2016, the US observed a 383% increase in gun-violence-related mass shooting fatalities. These events often disproportionately affect racial minorities. Of the 358 mass shootings in America in 2015, three-quarters of the victims were African-American. The American College of Surgeons (ACS) convened a Joint Committee in 2013 to create a national policy to enhance survivability from intentional mass casualty events, as massive bleeding can cause untreated victims to die from otherwise preventable causes within five to 10 minutes of onset. The product of the ACS working group was a curriculum named, “Stop the Bleed,” that teaches ‘laypersons’ (non-health care providers) proper bleeding control techniques.

What started out as a project evaluating whether Health Literacy impacted individual’s abilities to successfully demonstrate first aid skills learned in the Stop the Bleed course, our project has now grown into University-Wide organization that has multiple pathways to improving the health of our communities. We recognized that UNC is an unfortunate target of hate in the past two years owing to the unrest caused by the silent sam confederate statue. Communities of color both on and off campus have repeatedly been threatened with violence, and we as students realized the need for better emergency preparedness in this uncertain time.

Outcomes and Impact

We have raised over $15,000 in capital so that we may now install over 100 bleeding control first aid kits across the UNC campus, giving students the access necessary to save lives in case of a mass casualty event. In addition, we have created a University-wide student organization that involves undergraduates, public health students, professors, and medical students in furthering our mission. In order to support training and teaching of Stop the Bleed Skills, we have embedded Stop the Bleed training into on-campus EMT certification, and allowing students who graduate from that program to run classes on Stop the Bleed.

Utilizing this increasing network of trainers and passionate students, we are also training community organizations within Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. We have worked with and trained nurse leadership and ushers at 6 predominately black church communities, hold regular training sessions on campus that are open to the public, and are now involved with training Stop the Bleed at Camp Cardiac, a summer camp for high school students interested in medicine.

Study Team

  • Sean Donohue (Principal Investigator)
  • Stephanie Hoover, PhD (Faculty Advisor)
  • Alberto Bonifacio, RN BSN MHA (Faculty Advisor)
  • Neal Bartl
  • Neha Aggarwal
  • Valerie Evivie
  • Carson Merenblum
  • Annika Dirkse
  • Elexis Hollingsworth
  • Goutam Gadiraju

Partner Organizations

Funding Sources


  • Parent’s Council Grant Presentation

Awards and Recognitions

  • Parent’s Council Grant Award Winner

Contact Info

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