Chapter 1 – Survival Medicine

What is survival medicine? My definition is: “the practice of medicine in a environment or situation where standard medical care and facilities are unavailable, often by persons with no formal medical training”. This includes medical care while trekking in third world countries, deep water ocean sailing, in some cases isolated tramping and trekking in a developed country and of course post-The End Of The World As We Know It (TEOTWAWKI).

The basic assumption is that trained doctors and hospital care will be unavailable for a prolonged period of time and that in addition to providing first aid, definitive medical care and rehabilitation (if required) will need to be provided. Also the basics of personal and public hygiene will also need to be considered.

As is the case with any aspects of preparedness you need to decide what you are preparing for and plan accordingly. For some it will only be a 72 hr crisis; For others it will be a major long term event. Your medical preparations will need to reflect your own risk assessments, in terms of what knowledge and skills you develop and what you store. This FAQ is more slanted to longer term preparedness, but much is applicable to shorter term situations.