Doctor recalls treating victims of Hesston shooting

HESSTON, Kan. (KWCH) February 25th, 2016 was a normal day at work for Dr. James Haan, until just before dinner time.

"I received a page saying several level one gunshot victims which has never happened in my nine years,” Dr. Haan said.

The Medical Director for Trauma for Via Christi Hospitals says seven gunshot wound victims from Excel came their way. He said one of the challenges they faced was repairing the types of wounds from an assault rifle. The bullet wounds damaged nerves, bones, and blood vessels.

Dr. Haan says timing on that day made the difference between life and more death. The victims came in right before a shift change—so more personnel were on-hand. Also, the shooter was stopped before he could cause more harm.

Dr. Haan is proud of the medical response to the victims. But there were some lessons they learned, for example, strengthening statewide communication.