Every Day First Aid/Trauma Kit

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doorwarrior's picture
doorwarrior
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Posts: 166
Every Day First Aid/Trauma Kit

I would like to get everyone's input on what they carry in their Med/Trauma kits. This following is a list of the kit I put together and put one in my car and one in my wife's car. This is not my GOOD bag or full Storage list of Med supplies, just a Med/Trauma kit. I have tried to keep it small so that it is easly portable for any situation. My pack is a North Face bag a little bigger than a football. It has two main compartments with dividers and a waist belt to carry as a fanny pack. I can easily stuff it into any other pack or bag.  I am not a medical professional. I have taken every class I can find that is available to a layman and have become somewhat knowledgeable. I know we have several Medical Professionals here at CM and I would greatly appreciate any input

2 emergency blankets

1 tourniquet (this is a VERY large rubber band from a camo kit)

2 ace bandanges

1 skin stapler (comes with 35 staples)

2  2-0 PGA absorable sutures

2  4-0 PGA absorable sutures

1 scalpel with 4 blades

2 chlora-preps

2 dynastopper dressing (these will help with clotting)

1 gauze dressing

3 pair latex gloves

1 pair EMT shears

2 pair tweezers

1 curved and 1 straight  hemostats

assorted needles

1 disposable razor

chapstick

KIO3 (nuclear tablets)

1 tube bacitracin

eye drop

antacid tablets

advil

aspirin

ear plugs (not quite sure how they got in here but why take them out LOL)

Cortaid  (Cortisone cream)

Immodium AD

1 roll sports tape

1 roll waterproof tape

6 packets Burn Gel

10 packets alcohol wipes

6 butterfly closures

Band Aids (I carry 4-5 of various sizes and shape)

8 finger band aids

4 each Anti stick pads 3"x3"    4"x4" (great for larger wounds)

2 eye patches

eye wash

4 soins

1 tracheotomy tube

1 tube DenTemp (lost fillings, loose crowns)

1 aluminum core splint

providone

I purchased most of this list from my local drugstore, Amazon, Med-Vet international and Bright Source.

 

 Rich H.

 

 

jrf29's picture
jrf29
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First Aid Kit

The treacheotomy tube is a good idea, provided you know what you're doing.

Bacitracin is only effective against Gram positive bacteria.  Throw it in the trash and buy the triple combination bacitracin / neomycin / polymyxin B ointment instead (sold also under various trade names, such as "Neosporin").  

Don't use antibiotic ointment for every-day lacerations, or you will promote colonization of your skin with antibiotic resistant bacteria.  Reserve the antibiotic ointment for burns and large abrasions.  For normal lacerations, use iodine tincture or providone iodine.

Sutures and a skin stapler might be a good idea in a home disaster kit, (along with a several bottles of Lactated Ringer's IV solution with an IV setup, D5W solution, local anaesthetic or even a can of ether, a cylinder of oxygen, etc.).  But in a car 1st aid/trauma kit sutures are probably worthless.  No wound can be sutured until it is very thoroughly cleaned (unless you want gangrene).  No matter how bad the wound is, if you're on the side of the road you'll want to irrigate it, pack it and securely tape it until it can be properly treated.  Ditch the sutures and invest in additional gauze dressings, bandages, and a big bottle of isotonic saline with a large syringe for irrigation.

Assorted needles?  First of all, the needles won't do you any good without syringes to go along with them.  You'll want one long large bore (10-12-ish guage) needle for aspirating air from the chest cavity in traumatic pneumothorax (a real possibility after a car accident).  You'd want some 20-24 guage for administering injectible Sub.Q or IM drugs.  But you don't need to administer any injectible medicine, so why have the small guage needles?

Small guage needles are a pain if you're taking a long trip:  Many states allow their purchase and possession without a prescription (including yours, clearly), but remember that some other states consider them to be drug paraphernalia.  It would be a shame to be jailed in a distant state for the sake of needles that you didn't even need.

Diphenhydramine pills would be a good idea.

Also, consider buying a large waterproof dressing.  This would be literally a life-saver in the case of a sucking chest wound (you can also use the emergency blanket for that).

 

doorwarrior's picture
doorwarrior
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
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Posts: 166
first aid kit

Thanks for the take on the bacitracin, I will definately look into that.

The skin stapler is in there because I put this kit in my back county and hunting packs when I go out. Sometimes I am a 5 day hike from anywhere.

I should have clairified the "needles". The needles I have are more like sewing type needles for removing splinters etc.

You are absolutely correct about how far a person should go when attempting first aid. If medical help is nearby stabilize as best you can and seek professional help ASAP.

Rich

capesurvivor's picture
capesurvivor
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Posts: 963
silver

Anyone familiar with these? They get good press, not cheap. I am debating whether to keep a few around.

http://www.bestglide.com/quikclotpage.htm

 

CS

EndGamePlayer's picture
EndGamePlayer
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 2 2008
Posts: 546
McGyvered 1st aid kit

My farm kit is short and sweet-

Small bottle- peroxide and colloidal mix (used to wash wounds)

Super Glue & duct tape (used to keep from bleeding to death on way into a doctors office . . .)

Butterfly bandages for smaller cuts

Honey (for burns) works great if you get good quality and get it on the burn with a cold wet pack as fast as possible. It reduces blistering and stops the pain while enroute to doctor. You'll know when it needs refreshing.

Bandage stuff

Alergy Meds, Aspirn

Note, it used to have duct tape in it but it took up too  much space.

EGP

 

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
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Joined: Oct 22 2008
Posts: 2368
EDC Trauma Kit (now with pictures)

My trauma kit consists of the following.

(2)Gloves

EMT Shears

Mask

Protective barrier for CPR

(1) 0.5oz Triple Antibiotic Ointment 

(2) 0.9% NaCl syringe

(3) 4"x4" Gauze Sponge dressings

(3) 5"x9" Combine Abdominal Pads

(3) 2"x2" Sterile Gauze pads for wound packing

(1) Occlusive dressing (Repara transparent thing film dressing)

(2) Combat Applications Tourniquets

(25) Bandaids - various sizes

(2) Bacitracin antibacterial Ointments

(2) antiseptic wipes with Aloe

(1) Extra Strength Excedrine

(1) Suture kit

(3) Safety Pins

(5) Sheets of Moleskin

 

Shortages
I need to restock my excedrine, get another suture kit and get some Dremamine. I get terribly air sick in Helicopters, and large vehicles.
Also, I need some Nasopharangyl Airways and some water soluable lubrication for them. Wouldn't hurt to have a few more occlusive dressings as well, considering the threat for tension-pheumothorax that comes along with any perforating wounds of the chest (the dreaded sucking chest wound). 

Cheers,

Aaron

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
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Posts: 2368
QuikClot

Capesurvivor,

I'm familiar with Quikclot - I think Jager and perhaps Rich will be as well.
Commonly used by the military. It's a very powerful coagulant and needs to be used with a high degree of caution.

It can not be used to treat axial wounds - that's to say, it can only be used on the limbs. 
If used improperly, it can cut circulation and create larger problems.

Quikclot is essentially a "tourniquet" for all applicative purposes - it's used when all other necessary steps have failed to stop blood loss, or in a situation in which rapid blood loss is occurring.
Always try to: 
1. Apply Pressure 
2. Raise the extremity above the heart
3. Bandage or pack the wound 

Before using QuikClot.

Another consideration - because of the nature of the wounds QuikClot addresses, it's imperative that you are cautious when opening it. 
There has been a tendency for troops to tear it open using their teeth - this releases the coagulant into the maxillofacial orifices; which will dry them out, and can cause swelling of the throat, nasal passages and eyes.

In short - think of QuikClot like you would a tourniquet. Get proper training on it, because using it improperly can be very hazardous to both the attendee and the attendant medic.

Cheers,

Aaron

capesurvivor's picture
capesurvivor
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Posts: 963
Quikclot

Thanks for heads up;as usual, no free lunches.

 

CS

ivoryjackal's picture
ivoryjackal
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Joined: Oct 10 2008
Posts: 88
chest wound seal

One thing I notice isn't in anyone's list (correct me if I've missed it) is a good old fashioned plastic shopping bag.  Or five gallon ziplock, or trash bag, or whatever.  Granted, my trauma kits are generally geared towards things that can go wrong when combat firearm training, but a sucking chest wound can happen elsewhere.  You can get specialized (and probably sterile) versions of this, but it's too easy to not at least stuff a plastic shopping bag in there.  Yes, it'll be dirty and they'll need antibiotics (and yes, it therefore presumes no catastrophic societal breakdown) but could save someone's life while you're trying to get them to better equipped help.

I have a surgical kit that I bought intact (private me if you want links) for quite a reasonable price which my mother (former ER nurse, former prison nurse, currently nurse instructor) remarked was pretty damn good.  I've packed it up with extra needles, thread and scalpel blades from the same source and done a bit of practice.

Seems to me, also, you can never have too many hemostats.  They're really cheap and useful even outside of the trauma kit.  Yes, I keep my armorer hemostats separate from the med kit ones.

Saline solution and nitrile gloves are also very cheap and very useful.  If you pack nitrile gloves (or latex) with your other stuff, replace them once a year.  Maybe on the same date you replace your critical batteries or something.  If they're in a protective pouch, you're probably good.

I've got two kits in arms reach but am working and feeling a bit under the weather so I'm too lazy to inventory them.  I can't think off hand of anything I'm packing that hasn't already been addressed in one way or another, though.

Be safe.

Daniel

ivoryjackal's picture
ivoryjackal
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Posts: 88
one thing...

Regarding the quickclot stuff - you can get that impregnated in bandages from various sources.  I have yet to break one open, but I believe this will solve most of the danger of it blowing in eyes/nose/mouth.

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
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Posts: 2368
Sucking Chest Wound/QuikClot

Hey Daniel,

I didn't highlight it well enough, but the occlusive dressing is specifically for Tension-Pneumothorax, aka "Sucking Chest Wounds". 

Also, in addition to that particular EDC kit (which is small and portable) I have a couple Israeli Bandages in the wrap, and you can improvise using the discarded plastic wrapper and turn it into an occlusive dressing with some tape - just need to make considerations for the extent of penetration; entry and exit vs. only an entry wound to make sure you don't need to dress both sides. You probably know this, but may as well communicate too much lifesaving information rather than the other way around.

From what I've been taught, QuikClot (aka CELOX) is mainly used for trauma which includes exposed arterial wounds, not things like avulsion (traumatic severance) so the bandages are almost a bit redundant, and for more severe wounds (avulsion/Traumatic Amputation) you're better served using a tourniquet and dressing the stump. 

I could be wrong - so if anyone knows something more current or correct, please let me know.

Cheers,

Aaron

RNcarl's picture
RNcarl
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Posts: 382
I dunno

What is the purpose of this (these) kits???

Are you hiking? Have them in your car? Using them for when TSHTF???

I became an EMT when I was 18. A Registered Nurse at 34. I have visited Europe, Canada, and have traveled extensively in the US.

In the last 34 years, personally not "on the job" I have needed a bag as has been described above.... exactly THREE times.

Once, to use the CPR barrier for a poor sap that went down in a pharmacy having his prescriptions filled on the way home from having had open heart surgery - he died.

Second, an auto accident that I came upon late at night that literally tore the car in half. The driver had stood up from the driver's seat (that was now open to air) and walked over to the front porch of the house who's tree in their front yard his car impacted. I needed a butterfly bandage to close the cut on the drivers index finger.... the homeowner used toilet paper to stop the bleeding. EMT's were on the scene within minutes.

The third time was a very cold day in February right after I had moved to New England. I came upon an accident moments after it had happened. A woman turned left in front of an on coming pick-up truck on a four-lane highway. The small Civic was crushed trapping all three occupants inside. All three were conscious, no doubt had internal injuries yet were able to speak even though I am sure they were not quite sure what planet they were on. A state cop stopped behind me and called for an ambulance, I told him he needed three due to the severity of the accident and the rescue to open up the car. He had a cervical collar... only one... that I put on the driver. Rescue crews were on the scene in minutes with more gear than I could have ever carried.

What do I carry in my "Trauma kit"???

I have a pocket knife (in my pocket)

a roll of paper towels in my car.

A roll of packaging tape (to seal boxes I have to FedEx back to work)

Two boxes of assorted band-aids for the kids (and me),

a flashlight,

a stethoscope (just because I can't help it)

The last CPR barrier I had got gummy and I threw it away.

That's all I have needed in the last 34 years. I guess I have been lucky!

Now, when I have been "on the job" of course I carried all the things mentioned by everyone else above and much more.

 

Since I have moved to NC I guess I should start carrying more bleeding control stuff when I go hunting. However, my first line is always a cell and GPS. Duct tape is a good idea too!

 

What do I think someone else should carry? Take a GOOD first aid course or become an EMT if time allows for the training. Find a community that will let you "ride the band-aid bus" and see what things really happen. If you are the, "backwoods-out-on-your-own" type for days on end, you may - may need more stuff than what I outlined above. Maybe.

Thoughts?

doorwarrior's picture
doorwarrior
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 13 2009
Posts: 166
Purpose for a first aid lit

My options are to spend $150 now and never use the kit or to be unprepared and to have to rely on someone else to save myself and my family. You are absolutely correct that most of this gear (I hope) will never be used. I also hope that our country and way of life will continue, that energy will flow uninterrupted, that food will always be easily available, and that medical care will always be available within minutes. However, I refuse to rely only on someone else to save me. One of my biggest takes from this website is to be prepared! It is my responsibility to look after and take care of my own family and I take that very seriously in every aspect that is under my control. I could go into scenario's where this gear would be necessary but all you need to do is remember that the next 20 years are going to be very different than the last 20.

Rich

 

 

ivoryjackal's picture
ivoryjackal
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Posts: 88
quickclot
Aaron Moyer wrote:

Hey Daniel,

I didn't highlight it well enough, but the occlusive dressing is specifically for Tension-Pneumothorax, aka "Sucking Chest Wounds". 

Aaron, must have been all those fancy words got me all mixed up :)  - my bad, though, I really just skimmed posts before I mentioned it.  If I recall correctly, my first conversation with my, *ahem*, medical trainer (mom) resulted in her telling me a plastic bag and a set of shears to cut someone's kit off them was probably the single most useful/important thing that I could pack for a firearms related trauma kit, with a caveat that a hospital is reasonably nearby and the training facility is easy to find.  I think tourniquets, gauze and tape were already a given (and torniquets can be improvised as well), but I remember it being quite a revelation that a simple piece of plastic could be so useful.

Quote:

From what I've been taught, QuikClot (aka CELOX) is mainly used for trauma which includes exposed arterial wounds, not things like avulsion (traumatic severance) so the bandages are almost a bit redundant, and for more severe wounds (avulsion/Traumatic Amputation) you're better served using a tourniquet and dressing the stump. 

Good information.  I have three or four small bandages with quickclot in them but my presumption for their use is nothing that traumatic.  I have them in my gunshot 'blowout' kit just 'cause I'd rather have something I don't need than need it and not have it, but I got them primarily to bring with me on long bike rides.  The kind that may take one onto small roads in mountain country maybe 50 miles from the nearest town.  The idea being a crash that leaves me functional but severely bleeding would be easier for me to treat with a sterile bandage and pressure than trying to administer my own tourniquet while I take whatever next steps are necessary given the situation.

If I'm making a dangerous assumption there, somebody please set me straight.  All this stuff is theory for me at this point, having never had to treat any severe wound on myself or a loved one. I have, in fact, considered volunteering as an EMT, but at this point I don't have the time available to actually do it, so theory is, hopefully, where it stays for now.

 

Also, to the whole class, I'm tempted in responding to clarify certain things (about a sucking chest wound, for instance) for anyone who is unclear about what this is all about.  I'm not, however, expert enough to be sure I'm the person who should be explaining it, and it seems that to ask those who are more trained to start listing descriptions/symptoms/treatments/etc for the most likely injuries given certain situations would be like asking someone to write a book for free.  Does anyone have a good training resource?  Maybe three levels of resource - the free kind, the encyclopaedic kind, and the classroom demonstration hands on kind.  I might could benefit from this as well.

Thanks

Daniel

RNcarl's picture
RNcarl
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: May 13 2008
Posts: 382
why first aid?
doorwarrior wrote:

My options are to spend $150 now and never use the kit or to be unprepared and to have to rely on someone else to save myself and my family. You are absolutely correct that most of this gear (I hope) will never be used. I also hope that our country and way of life will continue, that energy will flow uninterrupted, that food will always be easily available, and that medical care will always be available within minutes. However, I refuse to rely only on someone else to save me. One of my biggest takes from this website is to be prepared! It is my responsibility to look after and take care of my own family and I take that very seriously in every aspect that is under my control. I could go into scenario's where this gear would be necessary but all you need to do is remember that the next 20 years are going to be very different than the last 20.

Rich

 

Rich,

Well said.

I guess where I am coming from is that to be able to use all of the items listed in the "every day" first aid kit, my experience has shown that, unless you go looking to use it, in every day life, little is needed in the way of "things" to deliver first aid. What is needed however, is a big dose of education and training.

If you have an incident where you would need an occlusive bandage for a sucking chest wound - (caused by gunshot or other trauma) you will need surgery - in short order or you WILL die. Or even lets say you injure yourself at home and have a very bad laceration from using a chain saw or cutting weeds with a machete; you can have all the fancy dressings, clot control enzymes, and even a special one-way valve that relieves pneumothorax - however, unless you get to a facility that can fix the damage and then treat the potential infection risk, a $500 first aid kit will be of no use. So unless you have the ability to build and then use a mini-OR in your home you will HAVE to rely on someone else to save you or your family member.

OK - here is where having "extra" first aid supplies and ABILITY to use them will help. Things begin to unwind as they have been and we are about to hit the tipping point.  (I say "about" to hit the tipping point because once we slip down the rabbit hole, there may not be facilities left available that can help.) You, or a family member sustains an injury at home that requires a fancy bandage to control the bleeding. The individual looses some blood prior to bleeding control. There is no ambulance to call because of draconian budget cuts in the community and a local "doc-in-a-box" clinic closes as well because no one can pay. The only facility left is the university hospital and its 30-plus minutes away... What do you do? In that scenario, "extras" will help because you then must treat and transport the injured person to the hospital.

When I try and read about money, economy and economics, my head begins to hurt. I can't even begin to figure out the next steps to proceed. Confront me with a nasty laceration with "uncontrolled" bleeding.... I know exactly what to do.

Knowledge is power. Experience levels the playing field. Together they produce wisdom.

I am not against buying/building a first aid kit. I think the most important item is the hand carrying the bag.

C.

capesurvivor's picture
capesurvivor
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 12 2008
Posts: 963
first aid

I agree, Carl. I mentioned quicklot because It had been described as a "miracle bandage' elsewhere and I figured someone here would know about it.. The type of implements in folks' kits mentioned above got me pretty nervous, like that old tv ad where the surgeon is giving directions to the guy on the other end of the phone who is holding a scalpel on where to cut to take out his own appendix. I'll bet sewing up a family member's wound with sutures might be the max you could hope for with any degree of success, assuming you could manage infection.

I know that in WW2 a Bosun's Mate on a sub took out some guy's appendix  with a sharpened kitchen knife and some whisky but these are battlefield heroics. Only a small percentage of folks, as you suggest, would survive severe trauma without skilled intervention. A general surgeon I chatted with at the Rowe conference in 2008 said  one simple thing she couldn't imagine doing surgery without was  suction.

 

CS

RNcarl's picture
RNcarl
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Posts: 382
Cape, There are lots of

Cape,

There are lots of quick things on the market. Most are the same thing marketed a little bit differently. Some, require a "prescription" from a licensed health-care provider to obtain "legally". It's a CYA move from the Pharma's point of view. They would LOVE to have us all run out and plop down $90-$100 on some of their "miracle cures".

Quicklot and its cousins are however useful in instances where there would be an extended transport time to definitive care. I can see where in several SHTF scenarios where if one sustains a serious injury, there can/could/would be a long time till the person was treated properly if at all.

As part of preparations I would suggest a very old book that was used in business however would come in very handy in such a situation where one would have to barter/bargin for proper treatment of a loved one. Heck, even perhaps to get a ride to a proper level of care.

It is called:   How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie  As the description implies, it is "the grandfather of all people-skills books" It was first published in 1937

I think it is a must have for any "first aid" kit.

C.

capesurvivor's picture
capesurvivor
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 12 2008
Posts: 963
Dale

My father and brother took his course decades ago when they went into business;they did think it was helpful, and your point is well made.

Wrapping it in kevlar and keeping in in a breast pocket would make it even more useful!

 

CS

A. M.'s picture
A. M.
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 22 2008
Posts: 2368
Carl, FWIW, I've lived in

Carl,

FWIW, I've lived in remote areas all my adult life, and have had to respond to several incidence in which "1st responders" were 5-15 minutes out. 
There hasn't been an incident of uncontrolled bleeding, or life threatening injuries yet, but I've dressed a few wounds, splinted a few fractures and applied lots of bandages. As you can see, most of the stuff I carry is more to prophylactically treat secondary and tertiary concerns; mitigating infection, minimizing potential blood loss, et cetera. I actually carry a space blanket to prevent shock, but it dual-serves as shelter. Have a few splints in my backpack kit as well.

This kit started off as a Military Issued 1st Aid Kit, so it's designed specifically to address the concerns of "CLAP-DB" wound assessment:
-Cuts
-Lacerations
-Abrasions
-Perforations
-Deformities
-Burns 

So as you assess the pt/victim, you can start immediately thinking about what tools you'll need for what injuries. Obviously this comes behind the "ABC's" of rescue medicine. 

It's a little more geared towards austere conditions just due to the nature of the work, but I get the feeling that "Austere" may be America's new theme in another year or so, and learning too much is preferable to learning too little. Same thing with "having'. 

Another thing is in the age of 4GW, I'd rather be "looking at it than looking for it", with regards to some of the more eye-brow raising items like Tourniquets and Occlusive dressings.

You said:

Quote:

 I guess where I am coming from is that to be able to use all of the items listed in the "every day" first aid kit, my experience has shown that, unless you go looking to use it, in every day life, little is needed in the way of "things" to deliver first aid. What is needed however, is a big dose of education and training.

Can't speak for others, but I take the training aspect of medicine with the same "life or death" approach I use with Martialism. 
There isn't anything in there that is meant to "McGyver" your way through a critical wound so you don't have to see a physician - it's to stabilize and minimize collateral injuries until such treatment can be administered.  

Quote:

If you have an incident where you would need an occlusive bandage for a sucking chest wound - (caused by gunshot or other trauma) you will need surgery - in short order or you WILL die. Or even lets say you injure yourself at home and have a very bad laceration from using a chain saw or cutting weeds with a machete; you can have all the fancy dressings, clot control enzymes, and even a special one-way valve that relieves pneumothorax - however, unless you get to a facility that can fix the damage and then treat the potential infection risk, a $500 first aid kit will be of no use. So unless you have the ability to build and then use a mini-OR in your home you will HAVE to rely on someone else to save you or your family member.

If you have an incident where you need an occlusive sucking chest wound, you're probably not at or near a hospital.
Not a rule, but by in large, I think most folks would be happy with "something" rather than "nothing", and I'd certainly feel better knowing that I could at least extend someones chance of survival by being a little over-prepared.
The opposite feeling would not be pleasing.

Which is why I'm working on the "mini-OR", and the skills to stock it and keep it running =)
Cheers,

Aaron 

doorwarrior's picture
doorwarrior
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 13 2009
Posts: 166
Medical Training

RN Carl said

I guess where I am coming from is that to be able to use all of the items listed in the "every day" first aid kit, my experience has shown that, unless you go looking to use it, in every day life, little is needed in the way of "things" to deliver first aid. What is needed however, is a big dose of education and training.

I couldn't agree more! Having a bunch of gear without the knowledge to use it is not the best scenario ( I still think having as many medical supplies as possible is still a great idea, you may run into someone that has the knowledge but not the equipment). I would also rather take a chance at saving a loved one than the alternative.

Wilderness Medical Associates offers many types of classes for all levels.

http://www.wildmed.com/

Rich

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