The Protector: From First Aid to Hospital Surveys
“There is no difference between saving lives and extending lives, because in both cases we are giving people the chance of more life.” –Aubrey de Grey
In an article in CEO Magazine it listed the biggest killer among executives worldwide as heart attacks. Charlie Bell (CEO of McDonalds) died of a heart attack at age 60. Oscar Munoz (CEO of United Airlines) survived a heart attack. Many of these ailments can be stress related and due to an unforgiving schedule. There are a great many reasons that protectors need to be competent in medical scenarios. Heart Attacks, allergies, drownings, natural disasters, trauma care, and just simply knowing where the medical services are in the areas in which they are assigned. We will discuss briefly some of these scenarios.
General First Aid: I can't tell you how many times band aids and tweezers have been used from my first aid bag of tricks. In fact I worked at a high profile mountain resorts and removing splinters from extremities seemed to be my number one call on many days. Band Aids of course were always requested either for my principal or by someone else with my principle. I carried Benadryl for those allergic reactions that might come up. Zicam was my medicine of choice in those colder climates in which my principal(s) would frequently catch colds.
Tourniquets: Tourniquets and Splints I often have available for my principal. The Combat Application Tourniquet (CAT) is still my favorite. A much needed tool when you must stop that flow of blood. To make sure that broken bones don't move the wrong way I prefer a SAM splint which I also have available to me. I often need to use these during outdoor excursions. I have found myself with executives who like horseback riding, skiing, and mountain biking these first aid tools come in handy.
AED: The use of the AED can increase survival by 66.5% in the case of a sudden cardiac arrest. That is huge therefore I always recommend that a protector spend the money to get one. Pretty easy to use under stress since the good AED's speak to you. CPR changes so much but if no AED is available you should be certified in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation anyway.
Pediatrics/pet care: For those working as a protector in a family office or residential/estate security you will likely need to have any medical certification covering children. Pediatric first aid/ CPR is a must. Believe it or not the American Red Cross also covers dog and cat first aid and CPR. Some principals love their pets, if you know what I mean so you may need to get certified.
Trauma: Unfortunately gunshot wounds or stab wounds are a serious concern in any protective operations. I still carry trauma kits in my first aid kit and on my belt if I am protecting a principal. I am still very partial to QuickClot which is an advance clotting gauze used to stop bleeding. SWAT-T is a multifunctional medical aid that you can use as a pressure dressing, a tourniquet, or elastic wrap. I also use a Halo chest seal if necessary. Hopefully you never need to use a trauma kit but if you do be ready.
Hospital Surveys: Every protector while on an assignment should know where at least two hospitals are in the vicinity; the closest and the highest level of trauma. Refer to the article on trauma levels in the link. You want to try and get two point of contacts for the emergency room. Depending on the facility you may get a physician, a nurse, or an administrator. We also want the Hospital Security Manager's information. Security can get you in doors and get you access to areas you might need, plus they are good for networking with other members of the hospital. Don't forget to inquire about their security as well, such as CCTV cameras. Make sure you know the ambulance service and the med-evac (Aerial transfers) point of contact as well.
You definitely need to know the route and the exact location of the emergency room. You also need to know if it is open 24-hours. If you are in another country make sure that you ask about an English translator. Something often overlooked is the emergency room procedure if your client is contaminated by a chemical or biological substance. Try and get in the ambulance with your principal if they let you. Lastly, make sure you know the specialties of the hospital.
Phone Apps: There are several apps for your phone that can provide first aid instruction or a simple first aid thesaurus but my favorite in locating the nearest Emergency room is the Find ER Now app.
This app is available for both I-Phone and Android.
This article discusses the need for first aid and some of my tools and favorites. I do acknowledge that there are many different types of equipment, tools, and applications to get the job done.
Remember keep your principal safe and keep you safe.
Semper Tutum Semper Vigilanti