10 Medical Supplies to Stock Up on Before it’s too Late

Rich M.
By Rich M. May 7, 2020 12:38

10 Medical Supplies to Stock Up on Before it’s too Late

One of the things that the Coronavirus Pandemic has shown us is the grave danger we all face because so much of our medical supplies come from China. Not only do masks and gloves come from the Middle Kingdom, but key ingredients to a large number of medicines come from there as well.

President Trump’s initiative to move as much of this manufacturing back to the United States is a good one, in that this has become a national security issue.

As this transition happens, I expect that we’re going to see a continuation of shortages. China has already shown that if they are going to go down, they’re going to go down fighting.

They’ve been withholding medical shipments, not only from us but from other countries, while at the same time, there have been many shipments of medical supplies that have been sent out, which have proven to be inferior and even unusable.

Related: 30 Supplies for Pandemic Survival

China isn’t the only overseas supplier of American medicines and medical supplies. A surprising amount of our pharmaceuticals and medical supplies come from other countries.

What will happen if shipping comes to a stop? What if our European allies, who produce those products are unable to ship because they are hit by an EMP?

The shortages we are facing due to the COVID-19 are nothing alongside the shortages we will face if there is ever a major disaster with a true disruption of our supply lines. In that case, the supply shortages we will face will be much more severe than what we are facing now.

When that disaster comes, the only medical supplies that you will have available to you, are those things that you have set aside in your stockpile before the disaster strikes.

With that in mind, it’s a good idea to make sure that you’re well-stocked. The question is, what to stock?

Personal Protection Equipment

One of the things that have marked the COVID-19 pandemic is a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). Medical masks and gloves have been in short supply; enough so that the Surgeon General asked the public to leave them for medical personnel to use. Part of this has been due to Chinese hoarding; but even without that, there would have been shortages.

When I’m talking about PPE here, I’m not just talking about masks and gloves, but also Tyvek suits (disposable HAZMAT suits), goggles and plastic face shields. Should we ever be faced with a more serious pandemic, such as Ebola, we’ll need much more than the cloth masks we’re using now.

Disinfectants

There’s a reason why doctor’s offices and hospitals are so stringent on cleaning; it’s because they’re trying to prevent the spread of disease. Germs on surfaces are easily spread to others. That’s why businesses are putting so much effort into cleaning and over half the population is disinfecting their groceries, before bringing them into their homes.

Guess where most of those disinfectants come from? You’re right, they come from China. That’s why you can’t find Clorox wipes in the stores. Not only are people buying them every chance they get, but China isn’t shipping as many as we need. And that doesn’t just apply to those wipes either; it applies to just about any disinfectant you can think of.

Related: How to Make an Antibacterial Sanitizer at Home

Antibiotics

If there is any medicine you should have on-hand at all times, it’s an assortment of different antibiotics. But our medical doctors don’t want you to have it, because people have been known to make mistakes and take antibiotics when they don’t need to. That’s dangerous too. Because of this, it’s hard to buy antibiotics without a prescription.

One way to build a stockpile of antibiotics is to buy veterinary grade antibiotics. While they are packaged differently and carry different names, many of these are manufactured in the same factories that produce those sold for human use. They’re the same medicine. If you find out which ones are which, you can use them. Just be sure that you know the right dosages to use and which antibiotics work for which infections.

Another source is to buy them in Mexico. Antibiotics are sold over-the-counter in Mexican pharmacies.

You can buy them in small boxes that have enough blister-packed pills for one treatment regimen or you can buy bottles of 100. I’ve used Mexican pharmaceuticals for years and had very good results. Many thousands of retired “Winter Texans” buy all their pharmaceuticals in Mexico every year, saving themselves hundreds of dollars. Once again, make sure you look up what they are and how to use them properly.

Related: The Most Powerful Natural Antibiotics Known to Mankind

Pain Relievers

Other than antibiotics, pain relievers are probably the most important medicines to have in your collection. Pain management is an important part of the healing process. Besides that, we all encounter many small aches and pains that we need help dealing with.

But pain relievers are one of the fastest medicines to fly off the shelves in any emergency; not just the COVID-19 buying panic.

I’ve seen empty store shelves due to hurricanes and serious winter snowstorms. People understand their need for these vital medicines, so they buy them when they can. But that might not leave any for you, if you don’t already have them on hand.

Related: Similar to Morphine: The Best Natural Painkiller that Grows in Your Backyard

Specialty Trauma Treatment Supplies

Bandages can be made out of any cloth. People have done that for centuries. But that doesn’t mean that we want to, if we can avoid it. Stockpiling bandages is cheap, compared to some of the other things I’m mentioning here. Just make sure that you stockpile quality ones; cloth bandage strips, instead of plastic ones. When push comes to shove, they last longer and work better.

But what’s more important than bandages are the things you can’t come up with easy substitutes for.

Things like butterfly bandages and Steri-strips, tourniquets, Celox, cohesive medical tape,  and elastic bandages. If you can’t do it yourself and you need it for first-aid, make sure you’ve got it.

Antiseptics

Cleaning your home isn’t the only thing that’s important, you need to be able to clean injuries and wounds as well. Yet in the recent crisis, alcohol and hydrogen peroxide became hard to get; not because of injuries, but because they can be used as disinfectants too.

But disinfecting a wound is considerably more important than disinfecting your kitchen table. So make sure that you have plenty of antiseptics set aside just for first-aid, over and above anything you might need to have, in order to keep your home germ free.

Related: How To Make Antiseptic Sugardine To Treat Wounds And Inflammation

Antihistamines & Decongestants

Believe it or not, many of these are made in Europe, rather than here in the United States. What happens to our supply, if something happens to Italy, for example. I haven’t checked, but several antihistamines are made there.

Granted, antihistamines and decongestants don’t cure anything, but rather deal with the symptoms. But that’s important too.

When we’re talking about patients who have respiratory diseases, such as COVID-19 or the flu, dealing with symptoms is important, so that the patient can breathe. And as anyone knows, you can go through a lot of these, just dealing with a common cold.

Related: DIY Home Remedy For Bronchitis

Prescription Drugs

If you have any family members who have chronic conditions, you should have as many months of those drugs on hand as you can. This may be difficult unless you have a very understanding doctor who is willing to write you the prescriptions. But if you know your doctor well and medication dosages are stable, many will cooperate with you on this.

Once again, you can buy most of these in Mexico, if you happen to make a trip to the border to buy antibiotics.

The cost will be considerably lower, but the quality will be just fine. The pharmacies there can translate the names of American drugs into those that come from their own pharmaceutical industry. Just make sure to note it down, so that you’ll know what they are when you get home.

If any of those medications require syringes and needles, you’d better make sure you’ve got a good stock of them as well. Most of the world’s supply of syringes comes from… you guessed it, China. While that will probably change in the future, I wouldn’t count on waiting for it to happen.

Related: Top 30 Over-the-Counter Meds to Stockpile

Vitamins

While you might not think of vitamins as medical supplies, they actually are. We take vitamins (those of us who do) for the purpose of maintaining our health, trying to make up for lacks in our diets. Even if you don’t take vitamins now, you should consider them for a time of crisis. With a reduced diet, it would be a good idea to take vitamins, to make up for the nutrients you aren’t getting.

But, as we just talked about with the prescription drugs and so many other things, many brands of vitamins are made in China. So who knows what the supply situation will be like in the future, especially during a time of crisis.

Related: How to Make Bannock the Survival Food Rich in Vitamin C

Ultraviolet Lights

Most people don’t think of ultraviolet (UV) lights when they think of medical supplies, but they are perhaps one of the most important. UV light has been proven to kill bacteria, viruses, mold, mildew and even fungi. To work, the UV light must be in the range of 200 to 400 nanometers.

Black lights, of the kind that are used for making posters glow in the dark, is at 320 to 350 nanometers, so they can be used to provide this UV light.

If you’re concerned about any sort of disease, it’s valuable to have UV lights for disinfecting with. You’ll want the strongest lights you can get, as the testing on killing those pathogens is mostly done with sunlight. The higher the intensity of the light, the better it will work as a disinfectant. Just be careful, as too much UV light can cause sunburn or lead to skin cancer.

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Rich M.
By Rich M. May 7, 2020 12:38
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35 Comments

  1. magician May 7, 12:56

    morbid as this may sound, a body bag or two might be something to consider to include. while for the obvious, they can be used for a sterile ‘theater’ for a surgery if needed… child birth, etc.

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  2. julieanna May 7, 13:26

    My name is Julie I have scleroderma. the pain is aweful. A friend told me about WILD LETTUCE EXTRACT ebay it works great three minutes pain is gone ten drops inb the morning ten at night lasts a month and half 18.00 grows wild as a weed legal. try it for pain control. good luck love Julie

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    • Gerald May 7, 17:59

      How do you take it? I have always wondered

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      • red May 8, 00:01

        You learn to live with it. I’m glad you found this, julieanna! Much thanks for sharing. a stepdaughter had severe problems but when her Muslim husband decided he wanted to live in New York (where he could fid good-paying jobs) she went with him. A few months on an all-organic diet (commanded by Kosher and halal followers) and she was fine. When Obama was in office, he made her and the grandkids move back to Pennsylvania, and after a few weeks, the problems were back.She couldn’t afford the organic-grown meat and produce.
        niio

        Reply to this comment
        • vocalpatriot May 10, 14:07

          So, a halal diet didn’t cure it, but subdued it. hm. good info, thanks.

          Reply to this comment
          • red May 11, 02:00

            patriot: Halal has to be organic. Pastured means on pasture, no grains or chemicals. Her diet stopped the progression and reversed it. The genetic disorder will be there all her life, so there’s no helping it. Most problems seem to stem from a chemical diet, not what God intended. Key is organic or natural. Some woman from India is screaming mad at Gates, and the liberals are all over her for knocking him and Monsanto. niio

            Reply to this comment
  3. Teacher May 7, 14:57

    Yeah a good source of these is pretty much unavailable now. This would have been a fine list if it was done back in early January.

    Reply to this comment
    • Stumpy May 7, 16:28

      It is always better to close the barn door after the horses have gotten out. Instead of leaving the door open so they can escape the fire. We knew about this Hurricane Maria took out the Saline manufacturer in the Caribbean Islands. Bill gates warned us four or five years ago with his TED talk but did anyone pay attention. No not even him! Humans do not plan like that. And Lo and Behold it got us this time what about the next time?

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    • Wary and Hopeful May 7, 16:50

      Another approach to consider is improving and maintaining your health – doing everything possible to improve your immune system which means getting and keeping your gut health maximized. Lots of info available from independent research that doesn’t come from the pharmaceutical industry.

      Reply to this comment
      • red May 7, 23:51

        Wary: German research shows tobacco kills the virus. but, we also know bleach used in the paper for cigarettes can cause lung cancer (for that matter, inhaling is very bad). I do not advocate smoking, but do, but was taught what to expect, and why by healers long ago, when doctors in the US were still selling Camel cigs 🙂 niio

        Reply to this comment
    • City Chick May 8, 22:25

      Now is a good time to take stock, tweek what you have and make a prioritized list of those things that you need and items which would be good to have moving forward that you don’t have on hand now. Got to think positive!

      Reply to this comment
  4. red May 7, 16:29

    Mexico, a lot of doctors own a pharmacy. If you have insurance, you pay a lot less to see the doc, and he gives a discount on medicines in the pharmacy. E-85 is easy enough to make. A solar still works well enough to make it strong enough to use as fuel. Iodine, all forms, is vital, but must be kept tightly sealed or it evaporates. Ginger is great for a runny nose. I’ll put less than 1/4 teaspoon in something and sip it. It works for 45 minutes after I’m done. silver, copper, and brass are very antiseptic, as is petals from calendula flowers.niio

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  5. Old Stumps May 7, 16:33

    Speaking of black lights the shorter the wavelength the less penetrating so the safer it is. You can have them directly visible and they will not be able to penetrate the tears on your eyeball. So they can be put out where they can be seen but not hurt you and it will kill any germ that shows up.

    Reply to this comment
  6. Rosie May 7, 16:45

    Many have short ‘use by’ date. How can you extend the life? Freeze?

    Reply to this comment
    • Cher May 7, 23:02

      Where do you buy uv lights?

      Reply to this comment
      • left coast chuck May 8, 01:12

        Home Depot for starters; probably Lowe’s and, of course, the 21st century version of Sear Roebuck and Montgomery Wards — Amazon. Your local head shop probably stocks them too. Don’t know that for certain. Maybe WallyWorld and Target.

        Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck May 8, 01:08

      With certain exceptions, the “use by” date on medicines is as artificial as the use by date on canned goods. The U.S. government stockpiles medicines, many of which are well past the use by date. Currently they are distributed in other countries experiencing some kind of disaster with concurrent shortages of medicines.

      Experiments have been done, although at this precise moment, I cannot enumerate them, that have shown that medicines retain their effectiveness well past their use by dates.

      The rules for extending the life of medicines is the same as it is for food. Controlled temperature, ideally 60°F, humidity levels about 30 to 40% and in a dark place. Just as the instructions usually say on the label, “Store in a cool dark place away from high humidity.”

      Even as they age, most drugs do not suddenly stop being effective. They gradually lose their potency. What that means is that amoxicillin capsules that are ten years old (an imaginary number) may still offer some bactericide properties, however not in the strength of fresh capsules. It may take more of them. Instead of one every four hours it may be necessary to take 2 every four hours. The problem is in the situation where they are not readily available, any method of determining strength will also not be available.

      There is a further danger to using out of date antibiotics and that is that they may and the emphasis is on “may” cause the particular bacterium that one is trying to kill to develop a resistance to that particular antibiotic making its use less effective in the future.

      A general rule of thumb (the only real general rule is that there is no general rule) is that liquids lose their potency faster than solids. You can tell aspirin is bad by the highly acidic smell that emanates from the bottle when you open it. It is dangerous to take aspirin that smells acidic. Toss it.

      There are sources on line that describe various drugs and their susceptibility to aging. I would urge you to seek them out. Use discernment in evaluating their accuracy. Do they cite real people, identify the testing that has been done, who reviewed it and where the results were published? When it sticks to straight scientific articles, the New England Journal of Medicine is generally considered reliable. It is only when it gets into socio-political areas that its reliability is lost to bias. Wikipedia is good and bad. Where it cites the reference points I suggested, I think it is reliable. Where there are no references cited, it can be sketchy.

      For many drugs, freezing is contraindicated. Freezing is not a universal panacea. Many drug labels, if you read that extensive literature that the druggist hands you with the prescription or that comes packed with the drug, warn against freezing.

      One final note about the literature that the druggist hands you. I recently discovered that the literature contained a significant omission with regard to drug interaction. I reported it to the pharmacist at the place where I purchased the drug. She informed me that the warnings did not come from the drug manufacturer nor her parent company, but were produce by a third party company via a computer program. We didn’t have time to discuss all the ramifications because of other waiting customers, but the impression I was left with is that some third party vendor sells a program that will print out the warnings they have produced or copied or somehow acquired and the pharmacists merely clicks on the drug and the warnings are printed out. It is sort of like the Wikipedia of drug warnings.

      While I don’t remember the exact details of the omission, It was significant enough that it would have serious effects on the drug user if they did not know about the warning and consumed another drug that had a very bad counter effect if consumed in conjunction with the drug for which I had the printed warnings.

      I don’t know if the “Well, nobody reads these things anyway” defense would help the company furnishing the warnings if an astute attorney were able to connect the devastating effect of mixing the two drugs to the omission in the warning. So even with that literature, you have to do your own investigation. It isn’t always correct as I discovered.

      Reply to this comment
      • IvyMike May 9, 00:44

        If you want to know all about any drug you can look it up on PDR.net, the online version of Physicians Desk Reference.
        If you want extensive info on any chemical or chemical compound in use in the U.S. you can look up its MSDS on line. Baking soda, L-Tryptophan, Americum-241, phenylephrine, you name it and it has a MSDS.

        Reply to this comment
        • left coast chuck May 10, 23:44

          Thanks, Mike. I didn’t realize PDR was available on line. That is a good solid resource for any drugs. When I worked as a court reporter I owned a subscription to PDR and it was one of my go-to reference books.

          Reply to this comment
      • Spike May 9, 15:57

        LCC, the problem with taking long expired drugs is not knowing how much of the “good” is gone. Can you overdose on antibiotics if you take more thinking they’ve lost some of their effectiveness? I don’t know. I know there are many drugs that are detrimental to OD on. In the EOTWAWKI situation we will have to experiment a lot. Always make note that Tetracycline turns toxic the longer it’s expired. I don’t know about it’s other “cycline” relatives.

        Reply to this comment
        • left coast chuck May 10, 23:48

          Spike: Exactly. It might be weak; it might not be weak. If it is weak, how weak? Do I take 2x as much? 3x as much? If I OD what are the bad effects that I might expect? I agree, at the ETOW, we will have to experiment. Trouble is, what worked last week might not work with this other batch this week.

          And you are right on the money with Tetracycline. That needs to be dumped as soon as its expiration date is reached otherwise it will be worse that what you are taking it for.

          Reply to this comment
  7. Cher May 7, 23:09

    How do you work or utilize the UV light to disinfect germs in a house. I don’t understand. The ones I’ve see are pretty small or handheld. I

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck May 8, 01:27

      There are many ways of utilizing UV light. One must exercise caution in use of UV light because it is not without its dangers. It can cause skin burns, blindness and cancer. There may be other deleterious effects but I am not aware of them. That doesn’t mean there aren’t any just because I haven’t read up on the dangers of UV light.

      The wave length of the light is directly related to the distance from the object the light must be in order to be effective. Typically, what most knowledgeable consumers do is purchase a UV unit which has the appropriate light for the distance from the light the object being sanitized must be. Hmm. That’s an awkward sentence. I hope it makes sense. What I have purchased is a baby bottle and accoutrements UV sanitizer which can also sanitize masks. It is a self-contained unit which is safe to use as the UV lights are shielded and don’t emit outside the unit. It is not cheap it is $150.00. It probably will be here at my house in time for the next wave of this virus which is supposed to be in the fall. It is timed so that the light is on for the length of time needed to sterilize anything in the unit. There is no guess work involved. One places the object in the unit. Turns it on. When the light goes out the object is sanitized.

      As for home made units holding the black light in your hand and passing it over the object to be sanitized, you can do on-line research to see what the suggested time and distance is for the device you are using, but I would urge you to use the same precautions you should use with any advice you see on list, including this advice. Just who is posting it? What are his credentials to be making the statements he is making? What is his financial interest if any? How has he verified that the statements he is making are accurate? Finally, how is he making the statements? Are there fiat statements? (This is how it is; no exceptions; no deviations; there is no other acceptable way) I am always suspicious of fiat statements. Life has too many variables to make fiat statements true except perhaps in very narrow instances.

      My own personal feeling is that I would not depend upon a home-made device or some $29.95 plus shipping device from some mail order company, especially if the device is Hecho in Shina.

      Reply to this comment
  8. IvyMike May 8, 00:04

    I suggest going to the redcross.org bleeding control info, they offer on line training for severe bleeding control, and info on control kits, of which there are now many available for under 200.00. Knowing how to evaluate bleeding, use a tourniquet, pressure dressing, and newer products like the combat version of quikclot are a great investment in prepping and also saving somebody’s life in the real world of accidents.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck May 8, 01:31

      As usual, good advice, Mike. While I don’t have warm fuzzy feelings for the red cross (small letters intended) their first aid advice is generally pretty good if limited in scope. However they are a large corporation and must be very cautious in their public pronouncements with regard to health topics. All the sue-happy lawyers aren’t located in Kalliforniya. There are some in Knuyork and the Distrik of Korrupshun too.

      Reply to this comment
  9. EddieW May 8, 01:19

    Colloidal Silver works as a cleaner, for cuts and sores, it will kill all Bacteria, and virus’s!! and is not a poison, so they cannot adapt to it!!
    I wish Claude had given us the address of his Mexican connection. I used to have one a prescription That cost $100 for 30 pills, I got 100 pills for $40 dollars in Mexico, but6 they eventually quit sales into the US!!

    Reply to this comment
    • red May 8, 20:38

      Eddie: Easiest, best way to make the connection: If you can, take a trip over the border and see a doctor there. Most have their own pharmacy, or are connected to one. Right now that 40 bucks is about 950 pesos, that’s how sour their economy has gone under the PRI socialists. hasta

      Reply to this comment
  10. Juniper 1 May 14, 15:49

    Back “in the day” (1950’s) the grade school I was in had UV lights mounted up near the ceiling of the classroom. I suppose it was for the polio pandemic that was current at that time. Funny how things go ’round and round’.

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