Gloves

There's more than you think to packing of few pairs of gloves in your First Aid kit, oh yes!

 

What material?

The Health & Safety At Work Act (1974) places a general duty upon employers to keep employees and others (such as clients) healthy and safe at work, that means the provision of PPE, but also the provision of appropriate PPE.   It also means provision of equipment which isn't going to cause harm in itself.

The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations 2002 asks employers to undertake an assessment of any substances used at work that are hazardous to health. Natural rubber latex is a potential allergen and therefore falls into this category.

Based on this, many first aid and medical organisations have withdrawn the use of latex gloves to eliminate the risk of causing harm to the user and the potential of a subsequent court case for compensation.

Nitrile gloves are more durable than latex, non-allergenic and more elastic than vinyl gloves.  

 

Which colour?

Seriously?  Working with members of the armed forces and security services, occasion we come across Black nitrile gloves.  Why black?   Because they're tactical and that is cool.
 

You will look pretty ninja in your black gloves but you won't see blood on them when checking the casualty and neither will you be able to make notes on the back of your hand.  And if you're dealing with serious bleeding, the enemy has probably already found you.  Ditch the black gloves.



If you are carrying gloves as part of your kit, you can keep pairs together and protected from dirt and water in the yellow container found inside a Kinder egg.  It's not sterile, but that doesn't matter1, it's clean.  And a good excuse to eat chocolate.

Kinder egg.gif

1.  Perelman VS,et al/  (2004)  "Sterile versus nonsterile gloves for repair of uncomplicated lacerations in the emergency department: a randomized controlled trial."  Annals of Emergency Medicine. Mar;43(3):362-70.

Back to more articles on Equipment