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#261748 - 07/10/13 08:28 PM Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 1864
Loc: Emerald City, OZ
For years I have been buying the Total Resources International first aid kits from my local Sam's Club for $21.63, including tax, to modify for missionaries and church-sponsored mission trips. The plastic case is sturdy, with room for some modifications, and the quality of the components is acceptable.

http://www.samsclub.com/sams/first-aid-center-326-pieces/196928.ip?navAction=push

I have looked at other kits; this one still offers the best bang for the buck. Here are the contents of the kit, prior to modification:

21 Antiseptic Towelettes
36 Alcohol Pads
06 Sting Relief Pads
06 Antibiotic Ointment Packets
06 Burn Cream Packets
05 Antacid Packets
05 Aspirin Packets
05 Non-aspirin Packets
01 English First Aid Guide
01 Spanish First Aid Guide
01 Instant Cold Compress
20 Adhesive Bandages, 1 in x 3 in
60 Adhesive Bandages, in x 3 in
50 Adhesive bandages, 3/8 in x 1-1/2 in
10 Butterfly Bandages
18 Wound Closure Strips
02 Gauze Rolls, 2 in x 4 yd
02 Eye Pads
08 Sterile Gauze Pads, 2 in x 2in
04 Sterile Gauze Pads, 4 in x 4 in
01 Sterile Trauma Pad, 5 in x 9 in
30 Cotton Tip Applicators
01 Adhesive Tape Roll, 1 in x 5 yd
01 Triangular Bandage, 40 in x 40 in x 56 in
05 Finger Splints
04 Examination Gloves
01 Metal Scissors
01 Plastic Tweezers

This year I have modified kits for Guatemala, one for Africa and I will be modifying another one India later this year.

This year modifications I have made this year have included the following which I ordered from Chinook Medical Gear. For each kit I have included:

01 Irrigation Syringe, 60 cc
02 Benzoin Swabs
01 Povidone-Iodine 10% Solution
05 Diomode Packets
05 Diotame Packets
05 Diphenhydramine (Antihistamine) Packets
02 Oral Rehydration Salts
01 Elastic Bandage, 3 in
05 Knuckle Bandages

Including the Diotame is overkill but I will continue to use my supply until I run out and I am still undecided on the Oral Rehydration Salts.

The two first aid guides (one English, one Spanish) are one-sheet pieces of paper, printed front and back, with a place for emergency phone numbers. Though they take up almost no room, they are almost useless for a third-world country. If I replace them, it will be with a used copy of a real first aid book.

Ideas for future modifications include Non-Adherent Pads, safety pins, duct tape, moleskin, either a pencil or a fine-point Sharpie, patient assessment form, CPR shield, Digital Thermometer, an additional Trauma Pad and Triangular Bandage. If room will allow it, a SAM Splint as well.

I always tell the missionaries or mission group to leave what is left of the kit behind for a group that needs it. I want each kit to be able to provide for, at minimal, a group of ten.

Does anyone have ideas for how to build a better ten-person first aid kit for a third-world country, know of guidelines on how to do so, know of a good place to buy quality components on a budget or build a good kit on a budget?

Note: I am not associated with any of the companies I have mentioned.

Jeanette Isabelle
_________________________
"When you're up to your [neck] in alligators, it's hard to remember that your initial objective was to drain the swamp." -- Floridian proverb

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#261749 - 07/10/13 09:14 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
haertig Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 2018
Loc: Colorado
I think you are the queen of first aid kits. I belive it was you that posted a link to a nice FA kit on sale a few months back that I promptly bought for my daughter. Thanks! This one at Sam's looks like a good kit too.

One thing that I like in FA kits is "coflex". A very nice stretchable bandaging material. Much better than "gauze wrap" for holding on 4x4's etc. Don't buy it at a human medical supply place - it will cost a lot. Buy it at a horse supply place. Same stuff. Comes in more different colors (we all want snazzy looking horses!)

Example, $1.39 for 4"x5yards at a horse place:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/pr...7&ProdTab=1

Example, $1.64 for the same size at a different horse place, a bit higher priced, but even more colors:

http://www.kvsupply.com/co-flex

Example, or $7.13 for the same size in boring colors at Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/North-Honeywell-10...keywords=coflex

Another great thing to get for clearing up wounds and preventing/treating infection is "colloidal silver spray". Again, buy it at a horse place rather than a human place. Much cheaper. Same stuff. While it is cheaper at a horse place, it still might be too expensive for you to put into the kits that you are building. It works much better on my cuts than the more traditional ointments - neosporin, polysporin, etc.

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#261750 - 07/10/13 09:35 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
nursemike Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 788
Loc: wellington, fl
er nurse for 37 years, off and on, and occasional medical missioner here: exquisite job on the kit. I would second the motion on coflex, aka coban and vet wrap. Might consider substitutability and re-useability in designing kits: gauze pads and wraps can be fabricated from clean rags, rehydration fluids fabricated from diluted fruit juice and salt: antibiotic ointment, anti-diarrheal meds, povidone and tape, not so much: might increase supplies of latter, decrease supplies of former. Include, if permissible, splinter forcep, hemostat, small scissors, thermometer, blood pressure cough/stethoscope if training of users supports such.all this imho, ymmv, and not to detract in any way from your efforts.
_________________________
Dance like you have never been hurt, work like no one is watching,love like you don't need the money.

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#261751 - 07/10/13 09:50 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: haertig]
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 1864
Loc: Emerald City, OZ
Originally Posted By: haertig
I think you are the queen of first aid kits. I belive it was you that posted a link to a nice FA kit on sale a few months back that I promptly bought for my daughter. Thanks! This one at Sam's looks like a good kit too.

Thanks. This is an interest of mine and I am always looking for the best bang for the buck.

Originally Posted By: haertig
One thing that I like in FA kits is "coflex". A very nice stretchable bandaging material. Much better than "gauze wrap" for holding on 4x4's etc. Don't buy it at a human medical supply place - it will cost a lot. Buy it at a horse supply place. Same stuff. Comes in more different colors (we all want snazzy looking horses!)

Example, $1.39 for 4"x5yards at a horse place:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/pr...7&ProdTab=1

Example, $1.64 for the same size at a different horse place, a bit higher priced, but even more colors:

http://www.kvsupply.com/co-flex

The kit already comes with two Gauze Rolls and there is a compartment in the kit just for them.

Can CoFlex be used in place of an elastic bandage? If so, which of the two should be used in a first aid kit?

Jeanette Isabelle
_________________________
"When you're up to your [neck] in alligators, it's hard to remember that your initial objective was to drain the swamp." -- Floridian proverb

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#261752 - 07/10/13 10:23 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: nursemike]
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 1864
Loc: Emerald City, OZ
Originally Posted By: nursemike
Might consider substitutability and re-useability in designing kits: gauze pads and wraps can be fabricated from clean rags, rehydration fluids fabricated from diluted fruit juice and salt: antibiotic ointment, anti-diarrheal meds, povidone and tape, not so much: might increase supplies of latter, decrease supplies of former.

It would be a waste, I think, to throw out the gauze rolls and gauze pads, especially the gauze rolls as there is a compartment just for them.

As you see, I have six Antibiotic Ointment Packets for a ten-person kit and five packets of the medication. I have to consider the cost for additional Antibiotic Ointment Packets and the space for the medication. How much of each should I have for a ten-person kit?

Originally Posted By: nursemike
Include, if permissible, splinter forcep, hemostat, small scissors, thermometer, blood pressure cough/stethoscope if training of users supports such.

Blood pressure cuff/stethoscope will not fit. Small scissors are included. Should a hemostat be included in a kit for non-professionals?

Jeanette Isabelle
_________________________
"When you're up to your [neck] in alligators, it's hard to remember that your initial objective was to drain the swamp." -- Floridian proverb

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#261753 - 07/10/13 10:35 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3599
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I defer to the wisdom of others, with more experience than me on this subject, but did want to say - I think it is very cool that you do this, Jeanette Isabelle. What a great way to make the world a better place. Way to go!
_________________________
Mom & Adventurer

You can find me on YouTube here:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCT9fpZEy5XSWkYy7sgz-mSA

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#261754 - 07/10/13 11:16 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3599
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Is water going to be an issue for th missionaries? It may be scope creep, and will certainly add to the kit costs, but a water filter, such as the Life Straw, could be beneficial when it comes to both hydration and sanitation.
_________________________
Mom & Adventurer

You can find me on YouTube here:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCT9fpZEy5XSWkYy7sgz-mSA

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#261755 - 07/10/13 11:27 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 1864
Loc: Emerald City, OZ
Water is not an issue for the group in Guatemala; I don't know about Africa. Either way, space inside the first aid kit and cost are an issue.

Jeanette Isabelle
_________________________
"When you're up to your [neck] in alligators, it's hard to remember that your initial objective was to drain the swamp." -- Floridian proverb

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#261756 - 07/10/13 11:48 PM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
clearwater Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/19/05
Posts: 1048
Loc: Channeled Scablands
"The discovery that sodium transport and glucose transport are coupled in the small intestine so that glucose accelerates absorption of solute and water (is) potentially the most important medical advance this century."


British Scientific Journal
5th August, 1978"

The "Simple Solution" - Home made Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS) Recipe

Preparing 1 (one) Litre solution using Salt, Sugar and Water at Home

Mix an oral rehydration solution using the following recipe.

Ingredients:
Six (6) level teaspoons of Sugar

Half (1/2) level teaspoon of Salt

One Litre of clean drinking or boiled water and then cooled - 5 cupfuls (each cup about 200 ml.)
Preparation Method:
Stir the mixture till the salt and sugar dissolve.

http://rehydrate.org/solutions/homemade.htm

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#261758 - 07/11/13 02:03 AM Re: Build a Wilderness First Aid Kit [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
nursemike Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 788
Loc: wellington, fl
Originally Posted By: Jeanette_Isabelle

It would be a waste, I think, to throw out the gauze rolls and gauze pads, especially the gauze rolls as there is a compartment just for them.

As you see, I have six Antibiotic Ointment Packets for a ten-person kit and five packets of the medication. I have to consider the cost for additional Antibiotic Ointment Packets and the space for the medication. How much of each should I have for a ten-person kit?


Blood pressure cuff/stethoscope will not fit. Small scissors are included. Should a hemostat be included in a kit for non-professionals?

Jeanette Isabelle


It is reasonable not to discard stuff that's already there. OTOH, a 1 ounce tube of antibiotic ointment provides dozens of applications, and might fit into the space where the gauze is housed. Similar argument for diphenhydramine and loperamide. IIRC, Usual dose for antihistamine is 25-50 mg every 4 hours, antidiarrheal is 2 tabs after first episode and one after each succeeding episode to a max of 4 per day. You have about one days treatment for one patient in each category. Is that enough? depends on the severity of the illness, and if the patient can get to a definitive care provider within a few hours. May not be economically feasible to provide more than this in a first kit. Hemostats are useful for removing bigger splinters, and have a high general utility value: emts and nurses generally carry both, and it's probably hard to get into trouble with them. Understand that bp cuff/steth is too bulky, but a little digital thermometer is still a good idea, and quite small. Hard to reconcile the competition between cost and comprehensiveness: providers like me always want more stuff. If you are not getting complaints from the users, you are doing just fine.
Oh-coban/vet wrap is great for securing dressings, not so good for elastic bandage applications: hard to reuse coban, while an ace lasts a long time.


Edited by nursemike (07/11/13 02:06 AM)
_________________________
Dance like you have never been hurt, work like no one is watching,love like you don't need the money.

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