Former Playboy model Victoria Valentino didn't think twice after seeing a gunshot victim lying in her street ... rushing to action and playing nurse until paramedics arrived.
Victoria tells TMZ ... she was sitting in her Altadena, CA home Sunday afternoon when she heard what sounded like a bunch of quick firecrackers -- cops say it was a shooting -- and went outside to discover a neighbor down on the ground.
VV says the man had gunshot wounds, including one in his shoulder, and he was turning gray and going into shock ... so she used her experience as a retired hospice and respiratory nurse, raising his leg to keep blood flowing to the heart and brain.
Victoria, the September 1963 Playmate and a Bill Cosby rape accuser and survivor, says the gunshot victim's wife was by his side too ... and they did what they could to keep him calm until paramedics arrived and took over. She says it's just what nurses do.
Sounds like Victoria was a hero ... cops say the victim was transported to a hospital and is expected to survive.