Having the right first aid equipment on hand during an emergency can mean the difference between life and death. It is not enough to know how to use it; you have to actually have to have it available in order for it to useful.
One of the main pieces of first aid equipment you will want to make sure you have is rubber gloves. Blue examination gloves work well and they should be powder free. Although no powder may make them harder to put on, they decrease the possibility of infection from the powder.
Some Equipment Benefits Responders
Other first aid equipment includes a pathogen kit is also a necessity to help prevent the spread of infectious disease. Blood borne pathogens are the most reported infections among first responders and this type of kit will help protect the user. It normally will contain protective gloves as well as a soft plastic mouthpiece for mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Sterile alcohol wipes are also included as well as bleach for cleaning up any blood spills.
A portable automated external defibrillator is one piece of first aid equipment that someone must know how to use before attempting it on a live person. While they are simple, they can still cause more damage if an untrained person attempts its use. They can, however prove to be invaluable in the event someone is suffering a sudden cardiac arrest. Proper placement of the paddles can bring the heart back to life.
A litter is also a common part of a first aid equipment kit. It is used to transport the injured individual once initial first aid has been rendered. It can also be used to carry the first aid equipment to the scene where it is needed. Usually a small, folded canvas litter can be used and is easier to store and carry as part of the first aid equipment kit.
In some cases, protective goggles may be called for, for example with a punctured main artery, which causes blood to spurt or splash. Although you are trying to help an injured victim, your first priority should be your own safety. Other first aid equipment may include scissors with which to cut tape or gauze pads to fit a wound and possibly a small pair of clamps.
Especially in an industrial environment they can be useful to clamp off a badly bleeding artery or to hold a tourniquet in place until professional emergency technicians arrive at the scene.