What to put in your first aid kit and advise customers at the pharmacy in case of radiation hazards

What should you put in your medicine cabinet and advise shoppers?

The list of necessary drugs and products was provided by the Ministry of Health and the National Cancer Institute. So, the first aid kit should contain:

  • A mask to reduce the ingestion of hazardous substances. It is worth stocking up on medical masks for all family members.
  • Potassium iodide – protects the thyroid gland from radioactive exposure. It will not help “up front”, so it should only be used after information about a radiation release has been confirmed. It also has age restrictions, which you should ask your family doctor about. Potassium iodide is used to reduce the negative effects of radioactive iodine on the thyroid gland in the event of an accident at nuclear facilities. It is necessary to take the required dose of potassium iodide only after official notification. Such notification is carried out by local executive authorities and the State Emergency Service through mass media. It is optimal to take the drug after notification 6 hours or less before the arrival of the radioactive cloud, but potassium iodide remains effective simultaneously with the arrival of the “cloud” and 6 hours after it. We do not recommend taking the drug 24 hours after the cloud arrives.
  • Alginates – create a protective barrier on the surface of liquid stomach contents.
  • Aluminum-antacid sorbents – accelerate neutralization, binding and elimination of radionuclides from the body. This group of agents usually has an active ingredient, aluminum hydroxide, and are used to accelerate the neutralization, binding and elimination of radionuclides from the body and thus reduce the health risks due to their intake.

You should add goggles, a raincoat (or rain gear) and a hat that covers your head as much as possible to your “emergency suitcase”. In other words, everything to cover the surface of the body from hazardous substances.

Clean, well sealed water should be stocked. Milk and pet food are also useful.

Bookmark your mobile and computer browser for government resources where you can find official confirmation of an emergency. Respond ONLY to official notification.

Save links to websites and social networks:

State Emergency Service of Ukraine, police, local authorities, president. It is possible to follow the national telethon “United News”, as it is in communication with the state, but this does not cancel the need to check the official confirmation of information.

Photo: Kilian Karger

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