How To Equip School Nurses with the Right Emergency Medical Supplies
6 Questions Every School Should Consider When Providing Emergency Medical Supplies to the School Nurse
This blog was written for School Health by K. David Scott, Founder, President and CEO, LifeSecure Emergency Solutions.
"3-10-3" – 3 Principles for Preparing School Emergency Supplies
When considering if you have the correct and adequate supplies, it is helpful to simplify the task by taking the "3-10-3" approach to evaluating your school emergency supplies. This involves preparing appropriate supplies for the:
Emergency Medical Supplies for 3 Key School Areas and Services
It is important to consider what supplies will be necessary for each of the 3 Key School Areas and Services:
School Facilities: classrooms, common areas, offices
School Health and Medical Services
School Administration & Safety Services
Supplies for each area and service are necessary in order to ensure an orderly and coordinated response to an emergency.
School Health & Medical Services – Medical Supplies for Major Emergencies and Disasters
In a true disaster, community first responders may be delayed for minutes, hours, or even days. Medical attention for severe injuries may not be able to wait for outside medical assistance. This means that school nurses may have to provide and direct care for severe and even life threatening medical situations. Disasters often produce mass casualties. Such situations can quickly overwhelm the available medical aid supplies.
Each school needs to provide adequate trauma first aid supplies for use by school nurses and other first aid trained staffers. This typically means having supplies for multiple first aid stations. These supplies need to go beyond those provided in the typical basic first aid kit designed for minor escapes, cuts, sprains, and burns.
As a trained medical professional, you are well qualified to select the supplies that are right for your school. The key will be to have enough supplies and an adequate number of kits, backpacks, or rolling bags, to meet a mass casualty situation staffed by you and other first aid trained staff members.
Emergency Preparedness Checklist Questions for School Nurses:
If we had to respond to a mass casualty situation without outside assistance for several hours or even days, would we have adequate supplies?
What types of injuries will need immediate response?
What supplies and equipment do we now count on outside responders to provide, but that might not be quickly present in a real disaster?
How could we supply multiple on-site responders with medical aid supplies?
What if these on-site responders had to be initially deployed to multiple sites on our campus? How will they carry and deploy these supplies?
Would these supplies best be stored near each responder vs. in a central office or storage area?
These and other questions may lead you to reconsider what supplies you will need and how they will need to be stored in order to prepare for a sever disaster. This preparation may save lives and reduce the impact of a disaster on your students and staff members.
School Health can help school nurses and medical staff purchase the right emergency medical supplies and stay within budget.