How To Set Up A First Aid Kit
Learning how to set up a first aid kit at home can save money and provide a highly personalized emergency kit of items important to you and your family. While pre-made, store versions of first aid kits are acceptable, making a kit personalized for your needs is an efficient and easy way to ensure you have everything you need in case of an emergency.
Things you'll need:
- Rubber gloves
- Prescription and/or over-the-counter medications
- Miscellaneous items you may need
- Decide how large your first aid kid needs to be depending on its use and storage location. A kit for your home is obviously going to be considerably larger than one stored in the trunk of your car, so plan accordingly. Water-proof, lockable containers are highly recommended to ensure the security and longevity of your first aid kit. Such containers are readily available at mass retailers or online.
- Make a list of items you want to include in your first aid kit. Check-off items you already have available to eliminate duplicate purchases. Be sure to keep in mind how large your container is and the “shelf life” of items going into your first aid kit. Include this list in your kit, taped to the inside lid for a quick-reference guide.
- Consider reviewing the recommended items provided by rescue organizations or the contents of pre-made kits. This will ensure that your first aid kit meets the basic requirements without lacking easily overlooked items such as gauze pads, latex gloves, and tweezers.
- Think outside the box. Items which may be essential for your family might be overlooked by other first aid kit assemblers. For example, if you have pets, you might want to consider including canned food for Fido rather than sharing your non-perishable human-food supplies.
- Prescription and over-the-counter medications. if anyone in your family has prescription medications, consider requesting additional supplies to include in your kit, taking care to rotate out medications based on their expiration dates.
- Review your list, making sure everything has been included and all worse case scenarios have been considered. Your car's first aid kit should include cell phone batteries, road flares and a small blanket, whereas your camping first aid kit is more likely to benefit from a snake bite kit, insect repellant, and compass.
- Maintenance. Be sure to store your first aid kit appropriately and routinely re-evaluate your family’s needs and requirements to add items accordingly. Check labels for expiration dates, prescriptions for shelf life and batteries. The checklist on your attached reference sheet can include anticipated “replacement” dates as a reminder.