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Improved First Aid Kit (IFAK) List

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In keeping with some other medical kit list I've posted here is another list: What's in your IFAK?

The IFAK stands for improved first aid kit also called individual first aid kit or even blow out kit to some military folks. The IFAK is a kit developed to provide Self-Aid/Buddy-Aid and provides interventions for two leading causes of death on the battlefield (not that we are on a battlefield but you get the idea), severe hemorrhage and inadequate airway. The Kit I will be describing here has been greatly modified from the ones issued to the military and contains much more inventory and as a consequence weighs about 1 pound more than a standard issue military IFAK, but will treat a greater variety of injuries. It goes without saying that I am not a doctor, this is just my opinion. Please take a certified first-aid course before assembling your own IFAK and some medical devices included in the IFAK described here requires more advanced training (more on that later). So what’s in my Kits (I say kits as these are no good if you can’t get to them). I have one for each car, the families Bug out bags, one for my get home bag, and one at work, plus a few  spares here and there). Remember you can only do what you have been trained and certified to do, and good rule of thumb is if you’re not an EMT do not break the skin.

If your out at the range, hunting, or carry a gun/knife this needs to be close by, a good IFAK is a life saver.

Small MOLLIE Pouch (1):
 4X4 Gauze Pads (2):
2X2 Gauze Pads (2):
Large Band Aids (5):
Light Stick (1): You never know how good the light will be
Rolled Gauze 3” (1):
Flex Wrap Roll (1):
Cloth Tape (1):
5X9 Surgical Pads (2):
Sharpie Pen (1): Marking time place on CAT ( Combat Action Tourniquet)
Latex Gloves (4):
Face Mask (2):
Anti-Bacterial Wipes (4): In a bind irrigate wound with bottled water
Medical Shears (1): Get a good pair spend a little extra
6” Israeli Combat Bandage (1):
4” Israeli Combat Bandage (1):
Combat Action Tourniquet (1): Requires First-Aid Training (learn the right way)
Nasopharyngeal Airway 28fr (1): Requires Advanced Training
Nasopharyngeal Airway 24fr (1): Requires Advanced Training
Surgical Lubricant 5 grams (2): Used for inserting Nasopharyngeal Airway
HALO Chest seals unvented (2): Requires Advanced Training
Hyfin Chest seals vented (2): Requires Advanced Training
Needle Decompression 14 gauge (1): Requires Advanced Training
QuikClot’s 4×4 Dressing (2):
Low Dose Aspirin non-coated (10): For heart attack victims (do not use if bleeding) 
Benadryl (5):


While not part of my IFAK I always carry a couple of these rolled up in my back back when hiking or camping and have one in my car as well the SAM Splint makes a great addition to any First-Aid kit and is perfect for those twisted ankles on the trail.

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Thank you for this list. A FAK is something I really need to put together for my car & kit.

I notice you did not include a suture set, which I have seen listed in most suggested FAK lists. Any particular reason?

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I leave suturing to the professionals, it's a real trick to know when to suture and when to leave it alone. You suture up some bacteria in that wound and you got a real problem. Just my opinion but if you got to use an IFAK that means stop the bleeding, keep them breathing and get them to a hospital. Noticed all the advanced training stuff like the decompression needle, I would never use that needle, even ER doctors miss the right placement 45% of the time (I'll have to go back and look where I got the statistic from). It's in my kit if a paramedic is on hand but for me it's hands off, I just don't have the training for it.

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I am sorry about what happened in TN. I am too busy to keep up with the bad news..

Some do better, and it is super important to know what to pray for for healing this world.

Still, suturing needles I have always imagined as a significant addition to my kit.

I watched so closely as I myself have been "sewn up" before. It was artful.

Beyond my imagination and obligation to do on myself, and I have seen Rambo I

You are right, to sew something up it to sew something in. Huge consideration. Last resort.

Good post and Well done.. Thank You for this,


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@dthomasdigital tht's Good Information,, and i also post one scorpion survival Active Shooter Kit information it includes 

(1) Military style tourniquet

(1) 6″ Wide Israeli Trauma Bandage

2 grams of CL Ox Powder (blood Clotting Powder)

5″x9″ Occlusive Dressing (chest wound seal)

(1) Abdominal Pad

(1) Pair Medical Gloves

(1) 6″ Trauma Shears

It's a compact solution for active shooter preparation and response

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On 16/07/2015 at 8:14 PM, dthomasdigital said:

If anyone ever ask why I carry an IFAK everywhere I go look no further than today's news about the shooting in Chattanooga, Tenn. You just never know when your skills will be put to the test.

Damn, thats a tragedy. How are the liability laws in the U.S when it comes to helping in situations like that?

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Your list is great, and encompassing, though depending on how you have your gear set up, keeping it all in one kit might not be the beat idea


For more "tactical" use, your list is best broken into separate layers

Shears, chest seals, a TQ, gloves, clotting agent, gauze, saline, Israeli bandages go in your primary IFAK, typically carried on a belt. Most keep a spare TQ and shears on their chest rig/armor so it's immediately available.

Things like bandaids, pain relievers, alcohol swabs, and antibiotic ointment are often kept in a smaller pouch or tin. Since space is at a premium, and these things don't serve much use against GSW's, most keep them seperate from an IFAK. Typically this tin (aka boo boo kit) is stored in an admin pouch, or kept in an assault pack or ruck, depending on how you are rigged up.

I keep baindaids, alcohol swabs, OTC meds, and antibiotic ointment in mine, along with burn cream and some chap stick, so it's pretty full, and needs to be secured with tape. You can probably get a similar amount of stuff in an altoids tin or something.


Lots of guys keep personalized care items (like an epipen) in their primary IFAK, but will often have "standard" IFAKs for aid to others kept in their packs.

Lots of people who I've talked to also have a sort of "+1" kit, to supplement their primary, and will include the more esoteric and in depth items (cpr masks, decompression needle, airway tubes), along with refills for their regular IFAK, should they get used, or damaged.


I ran a lot of stuff in my IFAK, which was a pretty big pouch (6.5"×6"×2") but even then it was STUFFED. Moving the alcohol pads, antibiotics, medication, bandaids, extra rolls of gauze, and a smaller israeli bandage to other areas gave me enough room to add more urgent use items, like a larger Israeli bandage, and 2 celox applicators, with some room to spare. Since the IFAK on my belt is primarily ment for self care, the TQ and Shears are kept up front, but the other full IFAK and the +1 kit in my pack have spares


Obviously it a pack in the only line of gear you're running, you aren't going to be super concerned with space, or which line of gear gets you the quickest access, but if you do have a belt, or plate carrier, moving stuff around makes a massive difference.

Edited by zackmars
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On 18/08/2017 at 2:31 AM, dthomasdigital said:

Well at least in NM we have excellent good Samaritan laws,  however it's best to only do up to your training.

Training and experience can show you how much can be improv'ed with what you have laying around.... Glad/Cling wrap is an excellent example.

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