Updated: Jul 29
There are a lot of survival tools and gadgets out there. Some are extremely useful and others simply aren’t. You can spend hundreds of dollars on gear but there is a free and easy way to boost your preparedness level today! No shopping, you don’t have to leave your home or wait for something to ship to you. You can download 2 FREE apps that will provide you with the knowledge and guidance you need to take on almost any unexpected disaster or emergency.
#1 - First Aid App from the Red Cross
Chances are, you are not a doctor. Nevertheless, you may someday find yourself as the only person available to provide medical care to someone in need. Every day there are accidents and emergencies that result in injury or illness. Even when an ambulance can access your location quickly, your knowledge of first aid can potentially save a life or prevent further injury. Everyone should learn basic first aid and be ready to respond if the need arises. There is a lot to remember about first aid and emergencies are infrequent, so knowledge is forgotten or never learned to begin with.
The American Red Cross has built a super easy to use and extremely informative app. If you have not already downloaded it, we highly recommend that you do.
App Name: First Aid: American Red Cross
Developer: American Red Cross
This app has a simple and straightforward layout. 5 Main sections listed at the bottom: Learn, Prepare, Emergency, Quizzes, and Hospital.
Your start on the “learn” tab upon open. It shows a list of about 20 possible emergency medical scenarios. Tapping on any of them will take you to a step by step guide of how to handle the situation. Pictures are included when applicable. It has links to related first aid guides and even a FAQ section that can answer questions that may arise when giving first aid care.
The second tab is “Prepare”, this has a list of events/scenarios rather than medical symptoms or situations. There are checklists, guides and links to other information for hurricanes, earthquakes, chemical spills and much more. There is a ton of information under each different scenario listed.
The third tab is “emergency”. It would be nice if this was the default page that the app opened to because it is the information you want to get at quickly in an emergency. There is a long list of medical situations and under each one is a simple step by step guide on how to handle that particular injury or symptom. This section does not include the vast information that the “learn” tab has, it is simply designed to quickly and easily direct you during first aid treatment. In some of the guides, they even walk you through diagnosing the issue by asking questions and letting you select an answer, then giving further instructions based on your response. If the app determines you should call 911, you can call directly from the app. The fourth tab is “quizzes”. These vary in their value. Some are challenging and others are not. It can be a good way to test yourself and see if you are retaining the knowledge.
Finally, there is a tab called “Hospital”. If you allow the app to access your location, it will show you the nearest hospitals with their phone numbers. You can also search by zip code or city. This is very accurate and functions pretty quickly.
This app is very easy to use. The categories are clearly marked and within moments you can navigate the sections and find what you need. The design is very simple and the layout is easy to navigate. The colors and text are easy to read.
This app is full of valuable information. Whether you are wanting to thoroughly learn about a topic or you need an emergency guide now, this app will provide you real answers and help. One of the best features is that most of the content is loaded in the app so even if you don’t have service you still have access to life-saving information. This app is the perfect companion to a good first aid kit.
#2 - Emergency Guide from the National Safety Council
What makes an emergency scary is their unpredictable nature. You can’t possibly learn all the skills or strategies needed to face the nearly limitless disasters that could smash your normally safe and predictable life. Rather than worrying about what you don’t know or leaving your fate up to chance, take advantage of this thorough and informative app from the National Safety Council. If you are like most people you always have your phone with you and now you will have access to a resource that can give you confidence and peace of mind. All you need to do is download the app and keep your phone charged.
App Name: EMR Guide
Developer: National Safety Council
Download: Apple: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/emr-guide/id1184167315
This app contains loads of information from a very reputable source. Unlike the Red Cross First Aid app, this one will not allow you to easily find what you need in an emergency instead is more geared toward planning/learning in advance. There are main categories that include dozens of guides and instructions for different emergency and medical situations. The simplicity helps you find what you need without distractions or loading issues.
The font size may be a little small for some but the design and background color makes it easy to read.
There are ten main categories when you open the app: “memory aids”, “responder safety”, “assessment”, “circulation/airway breathing”, “medical”, “trauma”, “EMS operations”, “special situations”, “miscellaneous”, and “all topics”. If you are not in an emergency, rescue, or medical field then it can take a few minutes of browsing the categories to find the specific topic you want. The information, when found, is very thorough, many specific topics include pictures and step by step guides. If you are looking to learn how to handle different emergency scenarios or you want to have the information available when you need it the National Safety Council EMR App is a great option.
Neither of these apps will cost you any money and if you are connected to wifi you won’t even have to use your data to download them. Therefore it makes sense to have access to them on your phone because you never know what can happen. If you are part of an office safety committee, work with children, or work with the elderly, these apps can help you learn how to handle emergencies and give you some peace of mind. Knowledge along with the right survival gear will put you in the best position to face disaster.