Article written by Guest Blogger WillG, a CF Medic with multiple deployments.
I was having the ultimate male bonding experience. My best friend, an infantry senior NCO, and I were packing our fighting rigs in his garage for deployment to Kandahar in 2006. I notice a small white plastic case he had in his admin pouch. I asked him ‘What is that?’
“It is my High Speed, Low Drag Owie kit. ‘Cause nothing slows down an operator like an owie!!”
I was sold on the concept immediately. We all wear gloves, eye pro and other forms of PPE when operating in hazardous environments, but everyone still get scratches and scrapes. Even the most disciplined operator comes close to dehydration during dynamic operations. We have all had minor, but nagging, bruises and bumps that slow us down. A little self –reliance goes a long way when working within a tactical environment.
From a practical standpoint, this is a small first aid kit for minor wounds, infection prevention and dehydration treatment. This gear does not belong in your IFAK or treatment kit as those are for life-threatening injuries. Imagine, rummaging through a casualty’s IFAK in adverse lighting conditions, you grab a package that feels like your issued hemostatic dressing. You pull it out and it is an oral re-hydrant powder. Lost time equals blood in the sand; not kept within the body!!
First aid supplies that belong in an ‘Owie’ kit:
- Chlorhexidine/ Providone-Iodine prep pads – for minor wound disinfection
- Antibiotic Ointment- for topical prophylactic infection control
- Various adhesive bandages- prevent wound infiltration
- Oral Rehydrant- not a sugary sports drink
- 4 tabs of 500mg Acetaminophen – half the daily maximum dosage
- Any prescription medication required
- Anaphylaxis kit, if indicated
This can be stored in a ziplock bag and stuffed into an admin pouch. It can be carried in the CTOMS™ GP Pouch (small) on your belt kit or rig or in your arm pocket in the CTOMS™ Small Wound Pouch. Incidentally, the latter is how I carry my owie kit.
DO NO HARM, DO KNOW HARM