The American Surgical Association (ASA) recently awarded its highest honor, the ASA Medallion for the Advancement of Surgical Care, to ACS Past-Regent Lenworth M. Jacobs, Jr., MD, MPH, FACS, for his dedicated efforts through the ACS STOP THE BLEED® program to empower U.S. citizens to respond to bleeding emergencies and save lives.
The medallion is awarded to surgeons in recognition of a “seminal contribution to clinical surgery or surgical education that truly established new benchmarks or paradigms,” according to the award’s description.
The STOP THE BLEED® program was initiated in response to the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. Dr. Jacobs recognized that if members of the public had been able to act as trained immediate responders, some of the victims could have been saved. He worked with a team of government and nongovernment individuals and groups to form the Hartford Consensus, which developed a national emergency response goal to improve victim survival following mass shootings and other intentional acts of mass violence by empowering trained bystanders to take lifesaving action.
STOP THE BLEED® was supported by President Barack Obama’s Presidential Policy Directive 8, which signaled a national commitment for preparedness to respond to bleeding emergencies. Then-Vice-President and current President Joe Biden also voiced strong support for the program.
In less than a decade, the results of Dr. Jacobs’ efforts through STOP THE BLEED® have been remarkable. Police and military personnel now carry bleeding control kits, more than 85,000 instructors offer their time to help teach the public about bleeding control, and more than 1.6 million U.S. citizens have been trained to save lives through informed response to bleeding emergencies.
Visit the STOP THE BLEED® website at stopthebleed.org for more information on the program.