Things to consider when buying emergency response kits
Emergency response kits play an essential role in the immediate and follow-up care of an acute medical incident.
They allow fast action to take place and can help to minimise serious injury to individuals.
When looking to buy an emergency response kit, there are a few critical things you should consider:
Purpose of the Kit
Firstly, consider the situation in which you are expecting to use the kit. Each kit is compiled for a different purpose and the contents of the kit clearly reflect this.
For example, emergency response kits may be targeted for workplace, outdoor adventure or sporting emergencies, in addition to many other instances. The key is to clearly define your needs so that you know exactly what to look for when researching different options.
Contents of the Kit
The items included in an emergency response kit can vary widely, according to the intended purpose. Some items that may be included in standardised kits include:
- Saline ampules
- Gauge needles
- Gauge cannulas
- Disposable gloves
- Oropharyngeal airway
- Alcohol swabs
- Sharps container
- Gauze squares
- Salbutamol & ipratropium MDIs
- Endotracheal tube and adaptor
- Reflux valve
- Space chamber
- Micropore tape
It is also worthwhile to think about customisation of the emergency response kit and how it fits your needs. Is a ready-made kit equipped with most of the things you will need or do you prefer to compile the kit yourself, tailored to your exact situation. Standardised kits often offer greater value in comparison, but may not be well suited to your needs. Another option is to add several items you need to a simple ready-made kit.
Organisation and Ease of Use
As emergency response kits are used in an acute situation under high pressure and time demands, the organisation of the kit can make a substantial difference to its utility.
Most kits are contained in a backpack with a harness and shoulder strap for easy mobility. Larger kits often require an over-sized backpack with wheels and an extendable handle for ease of use and mobility. While larger kits often contain more emergency equipment, it can be difficult to find each item when needed; for this reason, adequate storage compartments can be very useful.
Despite our every effort to prevent risk and injuries, medical emergencies should be planned for. While it’s not always possible to predict them, ensuring that you are equipped and prepared to handle emergencies when they do occur will give your patients peace of mind.