Howard Young Medical Center donates tourniquets to local SWAT team

The Howard Young Medical Center (HYMC) emergency department donated 12 tourniquets and dressings to the Vilas County Sherriff’s Department SWAT (special weapons and tactics) team to assist with lifesaving intervention for active bleeds in the field. The tourniquets were presented to the Vilas County SWAT team on Tuesday, Dec. 27.


Tourniquets are used to control life-threatening external bleeding from extremity wounds around an arm or leg. They work by squeezing large blood vessels and the squeezing helps prevent blood loss and those first few minutes of an incident involving a traumatic injury are crucial.


“Tourniquets can be very effective if applied correctly in the prehospital setting as approximately 40% of trauma-related deaths worldwide are due to uncontrolled bleeding,” said Lori Goff, RN, HYMC Emergency Department. “We’re excited to help equip the SWAT team with tourniquets and dressings as the ability to control bleeding on scene prior to EMS arrival can mean the difference in survival of a patient.”


“This donation from Howard Young Medical Center has the potential to save many lives,” said Lieutenant Mike Aderman, Vilas County Sheriff’s Department. “Our SWAT team is appreciative and grateful for this generous donation from the emergency department.”


The chance of survival increases when a tourniquet is applied effectively prior to arriving at a hospital. The HYMC emergency department worked with the spouse of a SWAT team member to secure the donation.


“This is an example of how our efforts to provide quality health care doesn’t stop at the door of our emergency department,” added Goff. “Investing in our community EMS and law enforcement with the tools they need to be successful is imperative so they can be prepared for any scenario. We’re grateful for their efforts every day.”  


The Vilas County SWAT team is unit that was established to provide specialized support in handling critical field operations where intense negotiations and/or specialized tactical deployment methods beyond the capacity of field officers appears to be necessary.


For more information on Howard Young Medical Center – part of Aspirus, please visit