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First Aid

Life happens. Someone slips on the stairs at work or chokes on a hot dog. First aid is any emergency care or treatment given to an ill or injured person before regular medical aid can be administered. Some first aid techniques like CPR require training, but most first aid can be administered by an average person with basic equipment. 

How to treat small cuts and scrapes

Be sure to keep a first aid kit at home and in your car. The kit should include a first aid guide with instructions on how to use the various tools.

First Priority

The first step in any serious emergency is to call 911. Emergency medical dispatchers will provide basic first aid instructions while the ambulance is on its way.

Primary Goals for First Aid

  • Preserve life
  • Prevent further injury
  • Promote recovery

Primary First Aid Tactics

  • Prevent heavy blood loss
  • Maintain breathing
  • Prevent shock
  • Get the victim to a physician or Emergency Medical Service (EMS)

Tips for First Aid Providers

  • Avoid panic
  • Inspire confidence
  • Do only what is necessary until professional help arrives

Sources:, Texas A&M University, U.S. National Library of Medicine