We have never really thought of ourselves as big planners, more of the ‘play it by ear’ folk. However, when taking on Africa with our Jeep and each other, we seem to be a bit more on the detail oriented side of things. One of these details is health & first aid. A simple mint tin with a couple Advil, Benadryl and Band-Aids will not be sufficient. But what will be sufficient for this type of trek?
To begin to understand this, we read other travel blogs, overlanding books, did searches on health care in Africa, got our Wilderness First Aid certification through NOLS, and then ran through some “what if” scenarios.
The Pioneering Spirit first aid kit:
Adhesive bandages (multiple sizes)
Liquid Bandage (Jen has a bit of a skin problem with adhesive)
Gauze (from 2×2’s up to rolls)
Gauze Non-Stick (multiple sizes)
Tegaderm (clear bandage to keep wounds dry and clean but allows you to have eyes on to watch for infection)
Trauma pads (5”x9”)
Adhesive wound closure strips
Benadryl (complete with Rx from physician, this is illegal in some African countries w/o Rx)
Epi Pens (we have no known allergies that would require these, however we are about to have all new experiences with food, insects, flora/fauna)
Alcohol prep pads
Wound Care/Burn/Blister bandages & gel
Sterile needled syringes for injections*
Sterile needles for blood draw/IV starts*
CAVIT (Temporary dental cement)
Oral Rehydration Salts
*These items are for giving to medical personnel in the event that we were to need professional medical services and wanted to ensure that sterile items are available for ourselves.
Our first aid kit is split into two bags. The first is a smaller bag that Velcro’s to the back of the driver’s headrest for quick access and to ensure it doesn’t get “lost” in the Jeep. It contains all the things we would need to get us started with any type of first aid. The second bag, quite larger, contains items we would need at a hospital/clinic and extra supplies for the smaller kit. With all of this, we hope to not need to use it.