It’s no secret that we live in a fast-paced world where anything can happen at any moment. We are surrounded by all kinds of threats and dangers, from deadly diseases to accidental car crashes. No matter how hard we try to stay safe, some events in life can be inevitable. However, this doesn’t mean that we should completely give in and let it all be. Instead, we can still prepare ourselves for the worst and opt for saving a life. That, however, cannot be done without the help of the proper medical equipment.
So, whether you are someone who knows how to handle EMT kits or are getting started on your new EMT job, you must have the proper emergency medical supplies in order to be able to save another human being’s life. There are many first aid products that can be used, but the following are the main types of essential medical gear.
The Various Kinds of EMT Medical Equipment
Firstly, let’s clear up what EMT is. EMT is short for Emergency Medical Technician – a person trained to help people who have experienced any kind of life-threatening situation. But what equipment does an EMT use?
The number one must-have item in an EMT’s bag is the irreplaceable bandage. It’s one of the most useful and convenient medical supplies available on the market. Bandages can come in handy in almost any kind of emergency situation, and this is because they can be used to cover up opened and closed wounds, to keep various dressings in place, to support an injured or pulled muscle or simply for applying pressure around an area of the body that is bleeding.
Now, according to what their purpose is, bandages can be divided into three main categories which are: tubular, roller and triangular form. It’s important to note that the person or EMT should be well trained and able to perfectly wrap and fixate a certain kind of bandage, making sure it’s as tight or as loose as it needs to be. There are even bandages that come with instructions on the packaging for people who don’t know how to use them, so shop wisely.
Tourniquets and Constricting Bands
Next up are the vital tourniquets and constricting bands. They are mainly used to stop heavy bleeding on an arm or on a leg. It works by wrapping around the band or tourniquet right above the haemorrhaging area super tightly. By doing so, the blood flow in the large blood vessels will be temporarily constricted thus the overall bleeding will be severely reduced and the injured person won’t lose a lot of blood. This can buy a significant amount of time for the person to be transported into a local hospital. Again, knowing how to use these items is very important, because if you make the constriction too loose or in the wrong area, then you might be making things worse instead of better.
Oxygen and Airway Equipment
Another type of absolutely crucial medical supplies are the oxygen and airway providing appliances. After making certain that the state of the heart is good, we want to make sure that the patient is breathing well. An EMT should always have a filled-up oxygen cylinder ready for use. Other similar equipment includes suction devices, hand-held ventilators and oxygen masks of various sizes. Lastly, let’s not forget the airway adjuncts, which can be used for opening up the nasopharyngeal airway (through the nose) or the oropharyngeal (through the mouth). These can help make sure that the patient is breathing while he/she is unconscious.
Before hitting the field, it’s of huge importance that you are prepared with the proper personal equipment. If you don’t protect yourself the right way and if you are not ready, then you might be doing more harm than help. Firstly, opting for good boots and clothing. By having quality waterproof footwear, you can be certain that your feet will be entirely protected, allowing you to walk around freely and focus on the help. The clothes you will be wearing should also be of breathable yet protective fabrics and don’t forget to protect your hands with thick latex gloves. As for the face, wearing a mask and safety eye goggles is a must if you want to stay protected from dust or air-transmitting diseases. Lastly, be sure to get a well-lit flashlight and your portable phone charger.
Other Emergency Essentials
The rest of the emergency equipment is also very important when taking care of an injured person. After you have stopped the bleeding, provided an airway and closed up the wounds, then you are ready for phase two. You want to make sure that the patient gets enough care so he can get to the hospital in at least a slightly improved state. You want to have a good stethoscope to check up on the heart and breathing. Next, trauma shears, magnifiers and tweezers are essential for on-field mini-operations. Burn gels, adhesive tapes and finally over-the-counter drugs will definitely help. Giving the patient painkillers or local anaesthetics will save him/her from a lot of pain, but make sure that you know if the person you are treating is allergic to these substances or not. The best you can do is ask his family or simply don’t give anything and rush to get him to a hospital as soon as you can.
Overall, we as human beings can be quite vulnerable. The world around us is quite challenging, but thankfully, our medical field has evolved immensely throughout the years. This is why today, we ourselves can do the bare minimum of ensuring our own and the safety of others by getting trained on the crucial CPR steps or at least studying to know if an injury should be cooled down or heated up, compressed or taped. So, with the proper training, you just have to get your medical equipment and supplies in order to be prepared to save another person’s life or even your own!