Wednesday, January 21, 2009

First Aid Kit

I recently completed a ten day Wilderness First Responder (First Aid) course, during which I learned a variety of important things and received 2 different first aid certifications, bringing my total to 3. I have a workplace first aid (CPR, First Aid for Adults and AED), during the course I received an American Heart Association certificate in CPR and Basic Life Support for Health Care providers, and a Wilderness First Responder certification, which meets the standard set by the Wilderness Medicine Institute.

So I thought maybe I should look over some of the first aid kits around and try to make one that would be pretty comprehensive, just in case I need to (try to) save anyone.

I started with a National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA) First Aid Kit from the American Red Cross:

5 packs of Antiseptic Wipes
5 packs of 1 fl oz Triple Antibiotic Ointment
2 packets of Hand Sanitizer (0.9 fl oz)
2 packets of Hydrocortisone Ointment (1 fl oz)
10 .375" x 1.5" Adhesive Bandages
25 .75" x 3" Adhesive Bandages
15 Adhesive Bandages-1" x 3"
5 Adhesive Bandages-1.5" x 1.5"
3 Adhesive Bandages-2" x 4.5"
3 Fingertip Adhesive Bandages
3 Knuckle Adhesive Bandages
2 Bandage Dressings-5" x 9"
1 Bandage Gauze Rolls-2"
1 Bandage Gauze Rolls-3"
2 Triangular Bandages 42" x 42" x 59"
5 Gauze Pads 3" x 3"
5 Gauze Pads 4" x 4"
1 Adhesive Tapes 1" x 10yds
1 CPR Breathing Barrier
1 Adult Emergency Blanket
1 Red Cross First Aid Guide
2 Pairs of Gloves, Non-powdered Latex-Free, size: large
1 Scissors, Pointed, metal
4 Thermometers, Disposable, Oral, Non Mercurial
1 Tweezers (Metal)
2 Aspirins, 81 mg each
1 Bio Hazard Waste Bag
1 Instant Ice Pack
1 No. 2 Pencil with eraser
1 Emergency Contact Card

In all fairness to the kit. It's pretty good, if you're in a playground in an urban area. If you're in the wild though, it might prove difficult with this kit. So I added:

2 Sam Splints
1 Trauma Pad
1 Ace Bandage with velcro closure
1 Trauma Shears
1 12 cc. Irrigation Syringe
1 Yellow Duck Tape
12 Ibuprofen
12 Aceteminophen
12 Naprosyn
12 Aspirin
1 Note Pad
2 Liquid Glucose (96 calories each)
1 Honey Stinger Gel (120 calores)
12 Dulcolax Laxative
1 Sanitary Napkin
1 Black Permanent Marker
3 Safety Pins
1 Package of Certo™ Liquid Pectin
1 Flashlight
1 Roll of Adhesive Tape
2 After Bite Towelettes
1 Qiuk-Clot Sport Clotting Sponge
1 Benzoin Tincture
2 Benedryl Tablets 25 mg.
10 Benedryl Strips 25 mg.
1 Fake Moleskin
9 Corn Cushions
1 Watch with a Sweep Second Hand
1 Gatorade Powder

Just for completeness, if I were employed by a company and/or had a medical advising physician, I might have epinephren and some antibiotics included in my kit, but a Wilderness First Responder can't administer any of these in most states without a well defined protocol and a prescribing advisor.

Needless to say, it no longer fits into the neat little bag. Additionally, it weighs 4 lbs. plus, so it's great for boating, or riding around in a truck, but is a bit heavy for backpacking. I'll be working on the weight of it, and working on a reduced list of items for backpacking.

This assumes a certain amount of other gear will be available for evacs (like a folding saw, or a section of rope, or some paddles, poles, or skis ...), and tasks like sterilizing water, and that someone (hopefully me) knows what to do with all of it.


Julian Robb said...

We just have scissors, alcohol, beta dine, cotton and alcohol for our first aid in our house and I know that it's not enough for us. We should have this kit in times of emergency.

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Amber Mclette said...

A healthy supply of first aid products can prevent a minor incident turning into a major drama.
First aid kit is a must must have wherever you are.

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