I was helping my Cadette Girl Scout doing some badges, and helping take a step ahead by reading the requirements for earning each badge. The GSUSA changed the badges and requirements a few years ago and I have to say, I'm still unimpressed. For example, these Cadettes, who are 11-14 years old, a First Aid badge is earned by choosing one from each section:
1. Understand how to care for younger children: a) take a babysitting class, b) Invite an expert (nurse or doctor) to talk to your group about treating minor illnesses and injuries when caring for younger children, or c) Talk to child care professionals, interviewing three people who work with children at a day care center, camp or your Girl Scout Council.
2. Know how to use everything in a first aid kit: a) talk to a medical professional, b) take a course, or c) talk to an emergency responder.
3. Find out how to prevent serious outdoor injuries: a) talk to first aiders, b) ask a wilderness expert, or c) go online and research injuries suffered by people participating in outdoor activities.
4. Know the signs of shock and how to treat it: a) research the signs of shock and how to treat it, b) Interview a doctor or nurse about the signs of shock, or c) ask an EMT or first responder to talk to your group.
5. Learn to prevent and treat injuries due to weather: a) Take a first aid course, b) ask a park ranger, lifeguard, or ski patrol member, or c) interview a doctor or nurse.
I hate that the go-to answer for GS is to ask a professional instead of getting some hands-on experience.
I was looking for the information online for this badge, and it's nearly impossible to find anything. They're so protective of their information, you HAVE to buy the book in order to find out the badge requirements. I was even looking for badge requirements for the 1980s or 1960s, and it's NOT OUT THERE. I used to have a copy of a 1980 Junior Girl Scout book, and I thought they'd have a better badge for first aid, but I couldn't find it. So, I got a sudden idea....the BOY SCOUTS! What do they have online?
Quick search...and I mean seconds...came up with the newest First Aid Merit Badge, for Boy Scouts ages 11 and up.
Requirements for the First Aid merit badge:
- Satisfy your counselor that you have current knowledge of all first-aid requirements for Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class ranks.
|- Simple cuts and scrapes|
|- Blisters on the hand and foot|
|- Minor (thermal/heat) burns or scalds (superficial, or first degree)|
|- Bites or stings of insects and ticks|
|- Venomous snakebite|
|- Frostbite and sunburn|
- Demonstrate bandages for a sprained ankle and for injuries on the head, the upper arm, and the collarbone.
- Show how to transport by yourself, and with one other person, a person:
- From a smoke-filled room - With a sprained ankle, for at least 25 yards
- Tell the five most common signals of a heart attack. Explain the steps (procedures) in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
- Tell what precautions must be taken for a safe trip afloat.
- Successfully complete the BSA swimmer test.
- With a helper and a practice victim, show a line rescue both as tender and as rescuer. (The practice victim should be approximately 30 feet from shore in deep water.)
- Show what to do for 'hurry' cases of stopped breathing, serious bleeding, and ingested poisoning.
- Prepare a personal first-aid kit to take with you on a hike.
- Demonstrate first aid for the following:
- Object in the eye - Bite of a suspected rabid animal - Puncture wounds from a splinter, nail, and fishhook - Serious burns (partial thickness, or second degree) - Heat exhaustion - Shock - Heatstroke, dehydration, hypothermia, and hyperventilation
- Tell what precautions must be taken for a safe swim.
- Demonstrate your ability to jump feet first into water over your head in depth, level off and swim 25 feet on the surface, stop, turn sharply, resume swimming, then return to your starting place.
- Demonstrate water rescue methods by reaching with your arm or leg, by reaching with a suitable object, and by throwing lines and objects. Explain why swimming rescues should not be attempted when a reaching or throwing rescue is possible, and explain why and how a rescue swimmer should avoid contact with the victim.
- Participate in a school, community, or troop program on the dangers of using drugs, alcohol, and tobacco, and other practices that could be harmful to your health. Discuss your participation in the program with your family, and explain the dangers of substance addictions.
- Explain the three R's of personal safety and protection.
- Do the following:
- Explain how you would obtain emergency medical assistance from your home, on a wilderness camping trip, and during an activity on open water.
- Explain the term triage. Explain the steps necessary to assess and handle a medical emergency until help arrives.
- Explain the standard precautions as applied to bloodborne pathogens.
- Prepare a first aid kit for your home. Display and discuss its contents with your counselor.
- Do the following:
- Explain what action you should take for someone who shows signals of shock, for someone who shows signals of a heart attack, and for someone who shows signals of stroke.
- Identify the conditions that must exist before performing CPR on a person. Then demonstrate proper technique in performing CPR using a training device approved by your counselor.
- Explain the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED).
- Show the steps that need to be taken for someone suffering from a severe cut on the leg and on the wrist. Tell the dangers in the use of a tourniquet and the conditions under which its use is justified.
- Explain when a bee sting could be life threatening and what action should be taken for prevention and for first aid.
- Explain the symptoms of heat stroke and what action needs to be taken for first aid and for prevention.
- Do the following:
- Describe the signs of a broken bone. Show first-aid procedures for handling fractures (broken bones), including open (compound) fractures of the forearm, wrist, upper leg, and lower leg using improvised materials.
- Describe the symptoms and possible complications and demonstrate proper procedures for treating suspected injuries to the head, neck, and back. Explain what measures can be taken to reduce the possibility of further complicating these injuries.
- Describe the symptoms, proper first-aid procedures, and possible prevention measures for the following conditions:
- Bruises, strains, sprains
- Abdominal pain
- Broken, chipped, or loosened tooth
- Knocked-out tooth
- Muscle cramps
- Do TWO of the following:
- If a sick or injured person must be moved, tell how you would determine the best method. Demonstrate this method.
- With helpers under your supervision, improvise a stretcher and move a presumably unconscious person.
- With your counselor's approval, arrange a visit with your patrol or troop to an emergency medical facility or through an American Red Cross chapter for a demonstration of how an AED is used.
- Teach another Scout a first-aid skill selected by your counselor.