Equipment ashore 4 - Reuse of swabs 1950s

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George HamptonGeorge Hampton

Service: 1949 - 1979

Rate: Warrant Officer Sick Berth Attendant

George joined the Navy as a Sick Berth Attendant (SBA) in March 1949 and specialised in operating theatre work. He served in Royal Naval Hospital Portland and in RNH Bighi in Malta. Whilst serving at Malta he embarked in HMS Daring in order to provide humanitarian relief after an earthquake on the Greek island of Cephalonia.

George recalls the reuse of dressings and equipment in 1950s.

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Extract Text (Duration 0.51)

Swabs in those days had to be made, we used to make the swabs, fold the swabs from rolls of gauze, cut them and fold them, pack them and sterilise them.  Syringes used to be washed and dried and then autoclaved.  Abdominal packs, unfortunately, were used again after being washed, but in the present situations obviously they're... everything is disposable and new swabs and syringes, etc, are used once and then discarded.

RNH Bighi, Malta, 1970s

1.15 mins - mp3 File

Maltese medical facilities 1970s

1.45 mins - mp3 File

Conforming bandages

1.17 mins - mp3 File

Re-use of swabs

0.51 mins - mp3 File

SBA uniform

1.01 mins - mp3 File

Types of equipment 1960s

1.42 mins - mp3 File

HMS Raleigh sick bay

01.24 mins - mp3 File