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Old 18 April 2017, 03:35   #11
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I'm always a bit sceptical about anyone with a really "good" first aid kit. There is very little in a first aid kit you will actually use for anything serious, and even less that can't be improvised. I tend to focus on the stuff that makes or breaks a day with the kids... plasters, paracetemol/calpol, etc.

That I would agree with - and understand the principles of what you are trying to achieve as learning rote fashion the correct treatment probably isn't going to apply well outside the comfort of a classroom.


I suggested a really good first aid kit as the enquirer was discussing a defibrillator for a boat which is well beyond the contents of a basic first aid kit. Ultimately it depends on where you plan to go on your boat and who you can reasonably expect to be treating.
If you are going 20miles offshore you need to carry a lot more than if you are never further than 3miles from a safe haven etc etc.
Whatever works for each boat user that they are suitably trained to use.
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Old 18 April 2017, 03:54   #12
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I have the HSE 3 day FA at work card & the emphasis is very much on keeping the casualty alive until the experts arrive. The actual equipment required is minimal & could easily be carried in a pocket or small pouch. IMO, realistically the best you could hope to do in a RIB at sea is control bleeding. Looking at my boat, there's no way could I get a casualty in a position to perform CPR or into the recovery position, due to lack of floor space.
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Old 18 April 2017, 05:33   #13
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Some interesting comments there - and somewhat cheering for me because I've quit diving and my "working" first aid kit is a Pelicase containing:
  1. An Aldi vehicle first aid pouch
  2. A CPR mask (full size)
  3. Trauma Shears
  4. A pulse oximeter
  5. A Ventolin inhaler
  6. An RNLI first aid diagnostic flow chart
  7. Painkillers with codeine (for that last wee late drachm )
My CAT C kit has a few doses of Glyceryl trinitrate in it for the angina patients - but at £75 to open the kit, they'd want to be damn sure they were needing them
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Old 18 April 2017, 06:07   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poly View Post
I'm always a bit sceptical about anyone with a really "good" first aid kit. There is very little in a first aid kit you will actually use for anything serious, and even less that can't be improvised. I tend to focus on the stuff that makes or breaks a day with the kids... plasters, paracetemol/calpol, etc.
This is often very true. A lot of the commercially available kits contains loads of dressings that can easily be improvised, and not much else. Having said that there are things you can't improvise and wont have on a boat. £50 spent on a "really really bad day" first aid kit is probably not a bad idea, especially if you are on the Scottish coast, out at night, or going any distance offshore. Things that keep people alive and you can't make/steal really are 2 good tourniquets, an epi-pen, means to keep a casualty warm, and perhaps a pocket mask for doing ventilation if you do have a cardiac/respiratory arrest on board.

Most of the times you're going to open your kit are, like Poly says, for simple painkillers, plasters, tape, ices packs, etc
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Old 18 April 2017, 14:01   #15
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Things that keep people alive and you can't make/steal really are 2 good tourniquets,
interestingly I don't think that is generally taught on ordinary first aid courses, however clearly it could make a difference in a really nasty incident. I've never seen tourniquets in any "public" first aid kit - would some rope (and twisting with something like a screwdriver to get it tight) not be an easy improvisation on a boat?

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an epi-pen,
are these available OTC for members of the public? None of my regular crew have known allergies so not something I'd have bothered about.

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means to keep a casualty warm,
certainly although the foil in most FA kits is of minimal value. My preferred approach is a small KISU/bothy bag, as I've used them in anger effectively.
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Old 18 April 2017, 15:30   #16
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It most definitely isn't taught on ordinary first aid courses due to the high risk of subsequent amputation. ( I'm sure Andy will be able to advise ) By my understand tourniquets are taught to non medical professionals on enhanced first aid courses for people who will be operating in remote locations e.g. jungles , mountains and properly offshore. Basically anywhere medical help cannot get within a reasonable time.
Epipens are great for anaphylactic shock but you need a prescription for them.
Ultimately take what you need to deal with whatever you can reasonably expect to encounter and be trained in its use. If you are taking your children local trips then a first aid course and whatever kit works for you. Simples. I
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Old 18 April 2017, 17:11   #17
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I'm always a bit sceptical about anyone with a really "good" first aid kit. There is very little in a first aid kit you will actually use for anything serious, and even less that can't be improvised. I tend to focus on the stuff that makes or breaks a day with the kids... plasters, paracetemol/calpol, etc.
Totally agree with that, and that's the principal I've always taught teaching powerboat courses. I work on the basis in a RIB that if it's anything worse than something really basic like a small cut or graze, headache or seasickness we're going to need outside assistance, in which case we'll either head ashore or call in outside assistance asap.

The worst injury I've encountered on a small open boat was somebody who ended up with a broken collarbone. In this situation we made her comfortable and decided to proceed back to base as swiftly as we could given the situation. We didn't touch the first aid kit. An example of the above principal.

I'm currently working on a 155ft vessel that makes some reasonable offshore passages. We carry a pretty comprehensive medical kit but an AED isn't on that list.
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Old 18 April 2017, 17:25   #18
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interestingly I don't think that is generally taught on ordinary first aid courses, however clearly it could make a difference in a really nasty incident. I've never seen tourniquets in any "public" first aid kit - would some rope (and twisting with something like a screwdriver to get it tight) not be an easy improvisation on a boat?
Tourniquets are back in these days, and are routinely covered on outdoorsy first aid courses (not paper-cut FAAW courses, but not just expedition medic level). Apparently its due to the trauma care trials that military medics have done over the last few years. The Combt Application Tourniquet (CAT) seems to be the most popular.

Apparently it's quite difficult to improvise anything that will work efficiently enough to be worthwhile.
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Old 18 April 2017, 21:52   #19
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Tourniquets are back in these days, and are routinely covered on outdoorsy first aid courses (not paper-cut FAAW courses, but not just expedition medic level). Apparently its due to the trauma care trials that military medics have done over the last few years. The Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT) seems to be the most popular.

Apparently it's quite difficult to improvise anything that will work efficiently enough to be worthwhile.
This...

It's actually very difficult to improvise anything effective, and given we all have fairly effective leg-slicers attached to our boats I certainly carry 2. You are, just like the AED though, very unlikely to have that bad a day ever. The amputation problem isn't a real problem - we routinely put tourniquets on anyone in theatres having a normal knee replacement and leave it on for 45 minutes without so much a hint of harm.

Epi-pens are exempted from requiring a prescription to administer and posses - anyone can administer them for life-saving purposes. GPs are generally happy to write prescriptions for them for people going climbing/sailing/powerboatnig/whatever to remote places.
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Old 19 April 2017, 05:13   #20
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I learn something every day. It's been very informative everybody. Thanks. Lots for us all to consider. I'm curious taitharris ... will you buy a defibrillator?
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