In the last post I talked about why I chose to include the default SWAT-T Tourniquets in our kits, instead of the North American Rescue Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT). Hopefully that left you with a good perspective and a look at the rest of the items will help to clear up anything that’s still a little muddy.
The included pouch has been upgraded with quality zippers since they are the first to fail on every medical bag I’ve carried in the field. In an effort to ensure they don’t degrade when you need it most, the zippers have been designed for heavy use.
The MOLLE webbing allows it to be strapped to bags or war belts, and the grab handle gives you a firm purchase for ripping it out of the bottom of a backpack, or a good grip while sprinting to the scene of an emergency. There is plenty of hook and loop space for a name tape or a medical patch for quick identification by everyone.
Not everyone has a background in medicine and may not fully understand the wide variety of gear that’s available on the market. Those people tend to take me at my word that the items in the Mountain Man Medical kits are the best options for the widest number of situations.
Others have asked why I chose one product over another and their questions are completely justified. The market for medical gear is huge and getting bigger every day as new companies look for better methods and innovations for keeping people alive.
This has been a trying time for us at MMM. Our product launch in February was widely successful (like 3x what we expected), but since then we've been fighting to get the inventory we need to make and ship the Trauma Kits sold.
As you know one of our core beliefs is that we don't reinvent the wheel. Our kits are comprised of name-brand components by trusted and proven companies such as QuikClot, North American Rescue, H&H Medical, and Dynarex. Most of these companies are experiencing tremendous impact from the current COVID-19 pandemic. (Example News Story)
When I say “impact” I refer to all of the following:
A tremendous increase in interest and order volume (Especially true of Dynarex but true of all medical suppliers)
An inability to keep up with manufacturing and or order fulfillment due to orders to send employees home or decrease the number of people who can work in the same space at the same time.
A challenge relative to supply chain for products coming from Asia or Europe, or… well anywhere.
Everyone is talking about it. Everyone. I haven’t had a
single conversation in the last 3 weeks that hasn’t included something about
the Corona virus outbreak. While not exactly the apocalypse, times are even
more tense then usual and America is bracing itself to weather the coming
The future is as unclear as ever and worried citizens are
buying out stores and stocking up on survival essentials. Like toilet paper.
Likewise, law enforcement agencies and emergency medical
responders are preparing for the worst, and hospitals are expecting to be
swamped with pandemic patients.
I’ve had the opportunity to talk with a variety of medics,
both in the military and civilian world. From EMTs, paramedics, ER doctors,
special operators, fire fighters and first responders, and sometimes I ask why
they chose their profession.
Some are in the medical field because they fell into it. But
often, the answer I get for why they do such a difficult job is because at some
point in their life, they witnessed a life-threatening injury and didn’t know
what to do about it.
That feeling of helplessness while they watched someone,
maybe someone they loved, struggle to stay alive drove them to pursue their
profession. They wanted, badly, to help, but didn’t know where to begin.
It confuses me that medical kits are often neglected. I’ve
been in the medical world for a few years now and I’ve never had a hard time
convincing someone that medical equipment is a good idea to have nearby.
But I still seldom encounter someone who keeps one nearby, even
if they’re never more than an arm’s length away from a weapon. A large number
of the people in my life don’t think twice about strapping up just to take out
the garbage, but haven’t thought twice about having a quality medical kit in
I get it. Tourniquets just aren’t as sexy as the latest Glock
you’ve had your eye on, or that new combat folder you’ll probably only use to
open Amazon boxes. Trust me, I get it because I’m the same way.
It’s easy to understand that dealing with trauma is
stressful. Emergencies are usually unexpected, and the surprise of a life-threatening
injury can throw even a normally calm person into panic.
This is especially the case when you don’t have any training
in first aid since you aren’t sure what to do. I know well what that particular
feeling is like. I have been the one standing there looking at a life-threatening
injury and not knowing what to do about it. It’s a terrible feeling and one I
work to avoid whenever I can.
Fortunately, it’s possible to avoid that feeling of helplessness,
and since it’s affected me so strongly, I’ve put a lot of thought into how it
can be dodged. Here’s one technique for how to manage panic in an emergency.