Friday, October 24, 2014

My At-Home Trauma Kit

Not actually Erin.
Picture by KJ Photography
& is used with permission. 
Last Friday, a member of the BCP Facebook page asked the following:
So, I was re-reading some of the archives, and came across Erin Palette referencing an in-home medical bag in the SHTF Zone 2: GHB article. Any chance of an addendum with a suggested rundown for that type of bag? Most other places I've seen such things posted vary from full-on surgical kits to a tote full of band-aids and epi-pens, so a BCP version would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for asking! I am happy to show you what I have at home, with the caveat that I realize I'm possibly missing a few important items and will happily take constructive criticism on that front.

What it does and doesn't do

The first question that must be answered for any type of gear is "What do you need it to do?"  In my case, I don't need a medical bag that is full of first-aid stuff like band-aids and ointment, because I already have something like that at home -- it's called the bathroom cabinet, and it's stocked with things like cotton balls and Kerlix bandage rolls and hydrogen peroxide and neosporin and Ace bandages and etc.

I also don't need a surgical kit, because neither I, nor anyone in my house, knows how to do surgery.  Also, a lot of those surplus medical kits you can get for around $20 are made with really cheap Pakistani steel that is NOT surgical. The US Food & Drug Administration has banned their importation, and the British National Health Service has declared that
"Poor quality surgical implements have been identified as a likely cause of MRSA infections because shards of steel have caused microscopic holes in surgical gloves. Badly made instruments that have unwanted grooves or trenches can trap body tissue and fluids - another possible source of infection."
And so, because I cannot afford quality surgical instruments, probably wouldn't know the difference anyway, don't know how to use them in the first place, and am not prepping for a complete collapse of civilization, I've chosen not to purchase any.

The main purpose of my medical kit is:
  1. To serve as immediate response in case I or a loved one suffer physical trauma, like a gunshot wound.
  2. To get us through the initial chaos of a disaster when medical help is limited or slow to come. 
  3. To be a handy take-along in case of evacuation or campout that will complement an already-stocked first aid kit. 
I am not a doctor, your mileage my vary, consult your physician if you experience an erection lasting longer than 4 hours, etc etc.

Here's what I have

Everything fits inside a waterproof, crushproof, lockable Plano 3700 box that sits at the bottom of the bathroom cabinet. Not only does this protect the books, but it also makes it nicely portable.

Top row:

Middle row:

Bottom row:

Furthermore, please keep in mind that this is wholly separate from the rather extensive first-aid kit I have in my bug-out bag...

... as well as a separate and larger collection of medical supplies which won't fit in my BOB and therefore have their own bag. The at-home kit serves to supplement these in case we need to evacuate.

Both of these kits have their own entries, which you can find by following the hyperlinks above. 

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