I’m a firm believer that everyone should have one or more first aid kits, which is how I ended up with the MyMedic MyFAK First Aid Kit. Normally, I recommend one for home, and one for the car. And if you own and shoot firearms, one for the range bag. This might make some people think of bandages and tourniquets. While my range first aid kit does have those items, it’s the everyday injuries that it’s more likely (thankfully) to be used for. I’ve had more hot brass hit my head than I care to think about. Empty rimfire shells have gotten stuck between my glasses and my face more than once. So minor burns aren’t uncommon. Neither are splinters when working with wooden target holders outdoors. Speaking of outdoors, we have way too many bugs that bite and sting around our favorite outdoor shooting spot. It’s also a bit rutted after it rains, making for a bit of a twist and sprain hazard.
A proper first aid kit should accommodate those little emergencies. And things like sunburn, headaches, and allergies. At the same time, the presence of firearms dictates that one should be prepared for the unthinkable – a gunshot wound. So I’ve upgrade my range gear to a kit which includes items for that too. It’s like insurance – you never want to have to use it, but you’re glad to have it if you need it.
For every problem, there’s a solution
With outdoor safety in mind, I realized that my basic kit covered the usual small injuries we faced, plus I had a tourniquet. But then I found out that a local company, MyMedic, offered a very comprehensive kit designed with shooting in mind. It’s the Advanced version of their MyFAK First Aid Kit. This kit has everything necessary for playing outdoors, as well as the “worst case scenario” items, like a tourniquet, clotting agent, and chest seal. These are far from every day items (unless you’re a paramedic), but can mean the difference between life and death in an emergency. Of course, unlike a bandage, they require reading the instructions, and ideally a bit of training for proper usage. No one ever said that saving a life would be easy. Certainly worth the effort though.
What’s in the MyFAK First Aid Kit?
The kit itself is broken down into different categories. These include bleeding, burn, medication, outdoor, topical, airway, hydration, sprain & fracture, as well as some specialty items. For about a minute, I thought I would go ahead and list everything included in this kit. Then I realized that with over 100 different items, it might be easier to just link to it. As mentioned, some of these items require more than just basic knowledge for safe and proper usage. Unless you have already completed an advanced first aid course, taking some time to become familiarized with each item is essential. And MyMedic has even thought of that (read below).
The little everyday things
Bandages, Tylenol, Benadryl, Advil, Pepto-Bismol (does your favorite outdoors place have a handy toilet?) and Dramamine are just some of the essentials. Then there’s sunscreen, lip balm, sting relief, and anti-itch cream. Many people already carry this stuff with them when playing outside, which is great. But if you forget, it’s handy to have a little extra. They’re for “non-injury” events. You either apply a bandage, some cream, or take a couple tablets, and keep going.
The “Oops” items
Burns, bigger cuts, twisted limbs, fever, or a bump on the head can put a damper on a good time. These are actual injuries that can be addressed by anyone with some basic training. Not life-threatening, but they generally require immediate attention. So there are finger splints, elastic bandages, tweezers, gauze, a thermometer, and a pen light. Sure, you could improvise some of these, but there’s no need to. And while some injuries might be the deal-breaker that sends you home, that’s not always an option. So being able to address these injuries is important.
When you have to be your own “911”
These are the things I hope to never have to use. For injuries where every second is precious, and action could mean the difference between life and death. A tourniquet, QuikClot, Chest Seal, CPR Shield, and Nasal Airway. The human body is pretty soft, and it’s far too easy to poke a hole in it. Even a small cut in the wrong spot can lead to rapid blood loss. So much can go wrong so quickly.
For many of us, there may never come a time when the majority of this kit is needed. But if it is, then it’s priceless. Over the last year, Americans went from being locked down at home, to exploring the outdoors in far greater numbers than usual. I work from home, and the closest medical center is two blocks from my house. But where we go shooting, cellular coverage is a bit spotty. To paraphrase an old saying, “When seconds count, the paramedics are just minutes away”.
All these items are stored in a perfectly-sized bag. I hang it off the back of the rear seats in my FJ Cruiser. That’s keeps it out of the sun, but visible to everyone who goes shooting with me. Because quick, easy access is important for first aid. Especially in an emergency. You can see in the photo below how it unfolds to provide access to the well-organized contents.
Which items have I used?
Somewhat ironically, we have not had any medical emergencies in the months I have had this kit. Nothing worse than sunburn. Considering how many cuts, burns, and insect bites I usually have, it might even be a little disappointing that I haven’t had to dig into this kit. But as I mentioned earlier, a first aid kit is like insurance – good to have, and you hope you never need to use it. In this case, the MyFAK is worth the peace of mind that comes with it.
The standard MyFAK First Aid Kit is normally $120, and was on sale for $90 on the day this article was published. The Advanced kit, which contains the sort of gear you’ll want some extra training for, is normally $240, and on sale for $180. While it’s certainly possible that you might save a bit of money by tracking down all these items separately, MyMedic has done all the work for you. It’s a very comprehensive kit, and has all the items I could want in a portable package. When they eventually get used, replacements for most of them can be easily sourced. But starting with a kit that has everything is a huge timesaver for me. My Medic also offers free training with purchase of advanced kits, which is another added value.
Of all the companies that have provided gear to review, MyMedic may be the most important. Even though I haven’t put their products to a true test, I still give them a very high rating. We take a 4WD loaded with shooting gear to an area outside cellular coverage. Having their MyFAK First Aid Kit with us provides an extra level of confidence in being prepared for emergencies large or small. If you need more info, or just want to check out the rest of their kits, visit mymedic.com. Note that they have some really good sales, and if you sign up for their mailing list, you’ll be notified of them, along with other specials like free shipping.
Comments? Questions? Have any of our readers tried out any of the MyMedic first aid kits? Feel free to share below.