Sunday, April 7, 2013

Red Cross Apps

The Red Cross has a family of free apps for your mobile device.  Go to the app store of your choice and search for American Red Cross.  Or go right to  
Start with a download of the First Aid app.
When you open it,  you get five tabs: Learn, Prepare, Emergency, Test, and More.

If you select Learn, you get the choice of 21 first aid situations to learn about:  what do you do if you suspect a broken arm?  A head injury?  A strain or sprain?  The app leads you through the principles--including short videos in some cases-and teaches you what to do.

If you pick the Emergency tab, you get the same selection of first aid cases, but you get succinct instructions and a button to push to call 911.

The Prepare tab shows you a list of 20 types of emergencies, and explains simple things to do before, during and after each.  In some cases, it links you back to pertinent first aid information.

Under Test, you can take short--but not tough--tests on half a dozen challenges and earn badges you can share on social media.

The More tab links you to other Red Cross programs like giving blood, taking courses and volunteering.

The More tab also links you to companion apps for earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes and wildfires.

These apps for specific emergencies use your phone's GPS to tell where you are and to send you alerts when, say, a tornado warning or wildfire alert is issued for your area.

These apps are necessarily concise and simplified.  They may not take to place of a real first aid course or preparedness study, but they do a nice job of hitting the high points and reminding you of what you may already have learned.

Put these apps on your phone or tablet and then spend some time with them.  More useful than Angry Birds, and almost as fun!

Emergency preparedness: do one thing today.

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