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The New Zealand Medical Service in the Great War 1914-1918

3. Equipment

3. Equipment.

The medical equipment of a R.M.O. is as follows:—
Medical Companion and water bottle1
Surgical haversack and water bottle1
Field medical panniers pairs1
Haversacks with shell dressings—
Infantry Battalion8
Other units1
Cases, chemical, water-testing1
Cases, water-testing, sterilization1
Cases, instruments, Chiropody1
Ammonia capsules200

These stores are replaced or replenished through the Field Ambulances.

The following are supplied for use at each Aid Post, and procured by the Quartermaster of the unit:—
Lamp, acetylene, with glass front (Authority: C.R.O. 845, dated 27-10-16.)1
Beatrice Stove (Authority: G.R.O. 1896, dated 26-10-16.)1

"S.B." armlets and stretchers are an Ordnance supply. Crude disinfectants are an A.S.C. supply, and procured by the Q.M. of the Unit from the S.S.O.

A sufficient number of blankets (say 20) should be kept in the R.A.P. and will be obtained by the Q.M. of the unit. When an excessive number of wounded is expected, a larger supply of blankets and some medical comforts will be supplied by Advanced Dressing Stations, on instructions from A.D.M.S.

A Thomas' splint and suspension bar is kept in each R.A.P., and handed over with it to the incoming R.M.O., unless fine R.A.P. is being handed over to a R.M.O. of a different formation, when the splint and bar are taken away with the rest of the equipment. When this splint is used, on a patient, a replacement must be at once secured from the A.D.S. or M.D.S. Instructions for the use of this splint were issued with Medical Corps Orders, dated 24-7-17, and must be studied and practised by all R.M.Os. They should also instruct bearers in the application of this splint.

Although Medical equipment is on charge to the unit, the R.M.O is regarded as immediately responsible for it.

"Expendible" items, e.g., drugs and dressings, are demanded from the affiliated Ambulance of the unit in writing, signed by the R.M.O.

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In case of inexpendibie items being lost or rendered unserviceable, in demanding their replacement the R.M.O. must forward with his demand on the Ambulance a certificate stating exactly how, where and when these items were lost or rendered unserviceable.Such general statements as "lost by exigencies of campaign," "destroyed by shell fire," are insufficient. The statement should be something as follows: "…………These items were destroyed by shell fire in the R.A.P. at (location) on (date)." Unserviceable or broken apparatus should be returned, as they may be repairable, and at any rate, prove the genuineness of the claim for replacement. Empty thermometer cases and ethyl chloride tubes will also be returned.

Economy must be exercised by R.M.O.s in expenditure of drugs and dressings. An efficient R.M.O. rarely requires drugs, etc., not included in this equipment.

Items other than medical equipment required by R.M.O., are obtained from Q.M. of his Unit.