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Facebook Bans Fundraiser for Rural Police Medical Supplies

Police officer Doug Smith decided to stop waiting on government grants for his department to purchase vital emergency trauma gear. According to Smith, grants can take up to 5 years to become finalized at rural departments were budgets are tight.

And although his department, Marshall Police Department (MPD), received the grant, there wasn’t enough to go around and some of the smaller agencies did not receive any money for medical gear.

In May of 2019, a colleague of Smith’s, MPD Officer Zachary Lastra suffered a life-threatening laceration to his left arm while responding to a call.

Luckily, Officer Lastra had a TQ on his duty belt. Although he was quick,

“In that time frame, I lost 4 units of blood. The average adult has 8-12 (units of blood) in their body. So, if I didn’t have this tourniquet, I know I would not be making this video right now,” Lastra said. “The trauma kits have vital medical supplies in them, and the tourniquet is crucial and could save someone’s life.”  

Smith had a similar experience which prompted him to take action, having had enough with waiting for bureaucrats he decided to take matters into his own hands.

“About 3 months ago I had a situation on duty where it could have turned into the same ordeal as what happened to Zach (Lastra). And it kinda got my attention. I was like, ‘You know, I need to do something. I’ve talked for years about how I need to do this that and the other. I need to do some sort of action. Whether I fall on my face or not, at least I can say I tried.”

Along with the help of Officer Lastra’s testimonial, Smith kicked off a Facebook fundraiser campaign to raise money for just a couple of the local law enforcement agencies without medical gear.

“Things were going great, then about 2 weeks in, Facebook shut us down. They claimed it was due to violating policies.”

Smith was frustrated about being stopped, and searched Facebook policies the fundraiser could be violating, but couldn’t locate any infractions.

Reaching out to Facebook also failed to uncover a misstep.

“When we asked, ‘What, exactly, did we violate?’ we got no response.”

As it turns out, however, Facebook’s deletion of the fundraiser helped Smith raise even more money.

“It upset me and several others that found out what happened, and the local newspaper, the Marshall News Messenger, ran a story on us. And then, the response became overwhelming.”

 Smith said they surpassed their initial goal of $6500 and the hope of helping 3 departments. After the flood of support from their surrounding communities, they were able to raise over $10,000 and extended their reach to 14 agencies in 4 different counties with trauma kits for around 50 patrol officers.

If you would like to donate to a cause where you can be certain your money will go to save a life, please click here to donate.

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Top 5 Must Have Items in EVERY Trauma Kit

There are a lot of medical kits on the market and some are better than others. Here are some things that are very important to include in your medical kit when you purchase. If these items are not in your IFAK (Individual First Aid Kit) already, it’s a simple thing to add them so you are prepared for a Trauma Emergency.

Number 1: Gloves

Trauma medicine often involves all manner of bodily fluids, so keeping yourself safe from disease while trying to take care of a stranger is a great idea. Having gloves in your kit gives you a way to remain safe but also save the life of a person in great need.

Having multiple pairs of gloves helps because not only do you have a spare pair for a helper, but if you tear the gloves in your hurry to get them on, something that has happened to me on multiple occasions, you at least have a backup pair available.

Number 2: Trauma Shears

A lot of kits leave out this important tool. The most common use of the shears is to cut away clothing to expose the wound. This is important so you fully understand the seriousness of the wound, and correctly identify whether it’s life threatening. This allows you to decide on the proper treatment for each individual wound.

But shears are a multiple use item that can be used for anything you can think of like cutting seatbelts to extract a driver from a burning car.

Number 3: Pressure Dressing

Your kit should include a quality pressure dressing. These can come in many different forms, from the Olaes Modular Pressure Bandage and the Israeli Bandage, to the NAR ETD, or if you are on an especially tight budget, your kit should have at the very least, an elastic bandage (Ace Wrap) so that you can make your own with some gauze.

A good pressure dressing is important for treating wounds in the junctional areas of the body, such as your neck, armpits and groin. It’s impossible to control life-threatening hemorrhaging in these areas with a tourniquet, so having multiples is a good idea when possible.

Number 4: Wound Packing Gauze

This is an important thing to have when using a pressure dressing. Packing this gauze deep into the wound applies pressure to the blood vessels helping the bleeding to stop.

You can increase the effectiveness of this method by using QuikClot. This gauze has been impregnated with a hemostatic agent which simply means it helps the blood to clot more quickly so bleeding is more effectively controlled.

Number 5: 1 (or more) Quality Tourniquet(s)

Severe bleeding is not only and emergency that will kill you the quickest, it’s also the simplest to treat quickly with minimal training, provided you have the right tools. The most important tool for controlling major bleeds is of course a TQ (Tourniquet). You can only treat one arm or leg per TQ so having multiples is wise.

It’s not enough to have a TQ in your kit. You need to make sure that it is in fact quality and not a cheap Chinese knock off that will get you killed. These are not suitable for saving your life and I find them in many kits sold by companies that are not aware of this dangerous difference.

Check out this video for more detail:

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Top 5 First Aid Apps for Your Smart Phone

When I was a kid, I tragically suffered through long, boring car rides. Nothing to do but watch the landscape crawl by and fight with siblings.

During those times my mind would often wander to how amazing it would be, to live in the future where I would be able to watch shows on a personal little TV. One that floats in front of my face, of course, since it's the future.

While we’re still far from the floating TV I imagined, we carry far more useful items in our pockets. Smart phones have created a lot of social problems in the world, but there is no denying the value of having an “all-knowing” device in our pockets, ready at moment’s notice.

Not all of us have the time, or inclination, to regularly attend medical training to keep those skills sharp and ready to go when a life is on the line. Smart phones allow us to have the ability to expand our readiness.

Below are ways to supplement your training and keep important, potentially life saving information at your thumbs. These are the top-rated apps on Google Play Store and what I think of them after playing around with each.

5. First Aids and Emergency techniques

Google Play Store Rating: 4.6


  1. None


  1. Not intuitive or set up in a way that makes it easy to find the right topic in an emergency.
  2. Lots of ads. Some that pop up in the middle of looking at important information.
  3. Doesn’t seem designed with emergency use in mind.
  4. No descriptive pictures

Doc’s Rating: 1

This app is not well thought out and is clunky to use and not very informative. Not only is there no emergency section so you can use it when someone is bleeding to death, it offers nothing in the way of pictures to describe what’s being discussed.

The multiple adds were frustrating with some popping up in the middle of my attempt to find a section talking about severe blood loss, which I never found by the way.

Hard to read text and annoying pop-up ads prevent use.

4. First Aid Guide OffLine

Google Play Store Rating: 4.4


  1. None


  1. Bad Tourniquet advice under “What not to do” section of Hemorrhage.
  2. Confusing description of how to Improvise a TQ
  3. Says to remove the Tourniquet if bleeding is controlled!
  4. Contains ads
  5. Uses precise medical terms like “Asphyxia” that most people won’t know.

Doc’s Rating: 1.5

Slightly better than the pervious app, this one likes to use expensive words that are likely to go over the head of anyone who isn’t an expert on medical trauma. The information in the app appears to be outdated as many of the techniques described have long ago been discarded. Use this one with the understanding it could be wrong.

Bad advice, and ads make this the wrong app for you.

3. First Aid Kit: First Aid and Emergency Techniques (Smart First Aid)

Google Play Store Rating: 4.9


  1. Easy to use interface. Finding the right section is intuitive and quick
  2. Includes Videos about injuries, (but not good ones)


  1. Includes ads
  2. No “Severe Bleeding” section
  3. Not designed for quick emergency use.

Doc’s Rating: 2

This app is easy to use, but appears to be more centered on non-emergency first aid. To get a higher rating from me would require some effort put into emergency trauma. When you need information in a life-or-death scenario, you need it immediately. Basic first aid, like how to stop a nosebleed, can wait a few minutes while you look it up on Google, making this app useless in my opinion.

Looks great, but very little substance to be worth your time.

2. American Red Cross

Google Play Store Rating: 4.4


  1. No Ads
  2. Easy intuitive Lay out
  3. Can call 911 from the App
  4. Helpful pictures


  1. Some instructions not written well
  2. Doesn’t show how to apply a TQ

First Aid Canadian Red Cross: Same as American Red Cross

IFRC: Same as Red Cross

Doc’s Rating: 4

This is a great app, and held the top spot for quite a while until unseated by the next contestant for the number one spot. The app is well designed with an intuitive layout making it easy and quick to use. It does offer a couple of poorly done videos, but at least the pictures are decent to show examples.

This is a pretty good app. Well thought out.

1. FirstAIDFast

Play Store Rating: 4.6


  1. Great instructional videos with every topic
  2. Easy to use lay out that would work well in an emergency
  3. Call 911 right from the App
  4. Find a hospital on the App


  1. Must have an Email Account attached to it.
  2. No description of how to apply a tourniquet
  3. Might not be able to find a hospital or call an ambulance in the US

Doc’s Rating: 4.5

This is the best apps I’ve seen, easy. It’s not made for only the US, so there could be things that don’t apply to your location. The app is easy to use and it’s quick to find the right topic you’re searching for. The use of great quality, 30 second videos also stands out here to show exactly what you need to do. This app is worth a look and the best one I’ve personally tested.

Get a FREE course on emergency trauma medicine on the Mountain Man Medical. No obligations, hidden charges or other shenanigans.

First Aid Fast is the best app I tested. Definitely worth a look.
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I Was Wrong… This Belt Will Work as a Tourniquet

There’s a commonly thrown around myth that belts can make for a good, improvised tourniquet in the middle of an emergency if it’s all you have.

I understand that this seems like it would work, but close examination of how tourniquets work, human anatomy, and the construction of belts, shows that this isn’t the case.

Almost all belts make for crappy tourniquets, and if you want to know all the reasons why, check out my YouTube video talking about just that.

However, now I’m forced to eat my words after discovering a belt designed to serve this function well.

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What’s Better? CAT Vs. SOF-T Wide

Trying to decide what the best tourniquet is for you? The Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT) is often viewed as the best device for controlling life-threatening bleeds and is trusted by medical professions all around the world. The SOF-T Wide is also just as trusted, but not quite so widely used. This doesn’t mean it’s inferior.

The CAT has the benefit of being the first to the market and was picked up by the US and British militaries for combat applications and so it enjoys great data supporting its effectiveness.

The SOF-T Wide came onto the scene a short time later, but since it was approved by the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care (CoTCCC) after the CAT, it isn’t as widely recognized, but still deserves your consideration in my opinion.

I have used both TQ’s in real world applications and I have some opinions that might help you decide which is the right TQ for you.

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Approved for Combat: The TX2 Tourniquet by Rev Med X

The Rev Med X TX2 Tourniquet

The CAT Tourniquet by North American Rescue has long been the king of trauma medicine. A large reason for this has been the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care (CoTCCC) approving it as an acceptable way to control massive bleeding in trauma patients on the battlefield.

CoTCCC is a government funded think tank made up of experienced nurses, doctors, and combat medics from all military branches, who evaluate the procedures of war medicine and release guidelines that are designed to improve the odds of survival from otherwise life-threatening wounds.

New companies are attempting to seek out a position of their own, challenge the king, and collect a portion of the market which the CAT has held with such a distinct lead. But to do that, they must first have their products vetted by the Committee.

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Biased, but Accurate: Why Medical Kits Are Better Than Guns for Self-protection

Let me start off this article by acknowledging my biased opinion.

I run a blog and YouTube channel dedicated to emergency trauma management for a website that sells trauma kits, so it would seem I have a vested interest in supporting medical kits over firearms when it comes to personal protection.

That said, I feel my opinion is justified because the points I have are good ones and might change your mind on which you should buy first.

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ASP 2020 Bullets & Bibles National Conference

Mountain Man Medical recently sponsored the annual Active Self Protection National Conference in Kansas.

The event runs 3 days during which attendees have the opportunity to attend various classroom and range training sessions taught by various instructors in the Active Self Protection team and family.

The event was hosted at the “Living Water Ranch” outside of Manhattan Kansas
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How to Make a Improvised Tourniquet That Will Actually Work

In Part 1 of this little series about Improvised TQs, I talked about why they often don’t work well to control bleeding.

If you haven’t read that article, I suggest going and checking it out before reading this one, so you know the limitations of improvised tourniquets.

But even though they aren’t very trustworthy, knowing how to make your own TQ is a great skill to have and something you should always have floating around in the back of your mind.

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Primary & Secondary Training Summit 2020

Primary & Secondary Training Summit 2020

At some point you outgrow those basic weapons classes at your local gun range and require more advanced instruction from world class shooters and Warfighters.

One of things I am most proud of America for, is the warrior subculture. This unique little niche is full of military veterans and active duty, but also civilians from all walks of life.

There are many gun owners in the world, but few “Students of the Gun.” Many assume that to be one means you must have some sort of credentials or you aren’t legitimate, but some of the most accomplished shooters I know are civilians who never once put on the boots.

I’ve known just as many veterans boasting incredible shooting skills who don’t even know where the safety is on that shiny new rifle they bought.

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