IRL Medical protocols at LARP

Hello all,

I’ve been mulling on some ideas for formal and informal protocols around IRL medical emergencies at LARP, we’ve been pretty lucky with something bad happening every 2-ish years or so and I’d like to get some things in place for when the next big bad happens.

For anyone who doesn’t know me, I’m a volunteer Ambulance Officer/EMT with St John, first aid tutor and event volunteer, this kinda thing is what I do.

Medic call- just like how we have standardised ‘Caution’ and ‘Time out’, I’d like it if an official, standardised ‘Medic!’ call was established for when someone is actually hurt. My intent is to reduce confusion- in games these days people are yelling everything from ‘First Aid!’ to ‘Healer!’ to ‘Doctor!’ and by having a standardised ‘Medic!’ call it lets the IRL medics tune out what they don’t need to listen for and tune in what they do need to hear. Medical people are used to all sorts of things going off in the background, having that standard call lets us know what to pay attention to and if we need to drop character and go or not.

First Aiders and Equipment- at the most recent incident, there were plenty of medical people but I was the only person who had gloves on me. For the safety of the medics (and the patient) I suggest that if someone is volunteering to be a medic at a game, for their own safety at minimum they need to organise to at least have gloves on them so that if something does happen on the other side of the camp they can at least put gloves on before they start treatment while the first aid kit is on it’s way.
-As an aside, I normally have gloves, some plasters and OTC pain relief in my bag/pouch at games, this tends to sort out most things.

Equipment- I’ve noticed it’s not always standard at briefing for the GMs to show what the first aid kit looks like and where it will be. This should be part of the normal protocol so that everyone knows what they’re talking about if they are sent to go get it. This would also be a good opportunity for if someone has brought their personal kit, to show it and state where it lives for the same reason.

Pre-game medic huddle- I think it would be useful for the medics to have an opportunity for a quick pre-game chat about what equipment and medications everyone has with them/any concerns they know about such as wasps and that everyone is on the same page. It would also give anyone an opportunity to tell all the medics things such as if they have anaphylaxis and where their pen is.

Post-accident debrief- This would be with the GMs, Medics and Welfare Volunteers, a quick discussion about what happened, what’s been done, what needs doing and who needs to know what so that any concerns from the rest of the players and crew can be answered and if someone knows So-and-So is taking things hard, someone can go and have a chat with them and follow up where need be.

That’s my two cents, what do you think?


Not a medic, but this all sounds like a good idea. And the post-accident debrief ties in well with good health & safety practice around keeping track of incidents and identifying risks so we can mitigate or eliminate them.


With the First Aiders and Equipment, is it better if medics bring their own gloves with them to the event or are supplied gloves by the GM team?

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Personally, BYO gloves in addition to the gloves in the kit. This ensures you have the right size, your preferred kind and you have them right there.

(And also ensures if the gloves were left behind in the gear shed accidentally the medics aren’t without gloves)


Imo there should ideally be a couple of first aid kits in multiple locations. This is usually the case (some venues have a first aid kit on site) but having one in a central area like the kitchen (as a caterer, this is just good practice and I will usually bring my own with me) and one in another well known area like the crew room would ensure that you do not have to run from one side of the camp to the other, at most it’s half of camp.

I think also making sure that the kit is checked regularly and refilled/had expired products replaced should happen, ideally after each game (afaik, this is not standard procedure yet). When I was health and safety officer at my last work place they hadn’t done a stocktake of the first aid kit in ages and most of it was expired/had lost quality (gloves) so much that they were brittle…

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I think it’s the job of the gear officer to check the kit?

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I am a medic, and I agree with all of this. Particularly a pre game huddle will ensure we know who each other are and relative strengths, also who is left if people need to leave for whatever reason.
I will note that a year or so ago, I noted all the things missing from the first aid kit, and I’m not sure if they were filled in. Certainly a review of the kit is important between games, particularly if things have been used. It did appear to be well enough stocked at the last game from what I could see.
I like standardisation of kit locations, procedures, and medic calls irrespective of game; I knew where the kit was this game, but sometimes different larps want it kept in the crew room.
You’ve thoroughly considered the angles, I can’t think of anything to add. :slight_smile:


This. With a slight caveat: Even though I knew that “medic” and “first-aid” were the usual words used for this situation, when it came to being injured myself, the only thing I could think to yell was “I need help”. Perhaps standardising will help that, but in my case there was an instinctual component that took over. Other people did work out something was wrong though, and called for first-aid, so the point still stands.