Over the past few years, the Danish market for first aid equipment has been flooded with first aid kits of all sorts and origins – a commodity in any low-cost supermarket. The result: First aid has become a low-priority item, the kit most often left somewhere in the back of a basement cupboard. The consequence: when needed, a potentially lifesaving action is replaced by stand-alone panic as users lack the ability to act.
Falck is a global provider of products and services within the security and rescue arena. The brand is strongly associated with its rescue services providing ambulance and paramedical assistance. It’s also well known for its first aid kit and associated training courses for the public.
It was the first aid business in the private sector that launched the ambition to start over and spark new life into people’s ability to act when help is needed. The user-experience needed a makeover and the first aid kit a general improvement to support it.
The uncomfortable user does not take action.
Studies made among Danish citizens showed a clear sign; People become insecure when challenged by even basic first aid. When opening an average first aid kit the action readiness is not encouraged – on the contrary. Falck teamed up with Designit to design a completely new first aid kit characterised by the unquestionable design parameters; user-friendliness, logic, proven quality and ‘look and feel’.
Designit set up a team of experienced product-, graphical, - and instructional designers. The scope for the product designers were to work with a combination of form and material that would ensure optimal function and cultivate a visible in-home placement leading to more consistent user-awareness. The graphical focus was on creating a new, simple visual expression of the materials in the kit. The use of colour coding and hierarchical logic provided the easy content overview. Intuitive use was make or break.
Guide to action
The new first aid kit is divided into four easily accessible compartments that relate to the most common first aid needs; burns, bleeds, bruises and sprains. In the instance of burns the user is quickly guided through the process of treating burns most effectively - i.e. cooling first then applying the right bandage - the rest of the kit’s contents creating as little confusion in the process as possible. The instructional design is centred on using every-day terms around processes and materials, which in combination with the categorisation of the injuries provide a truly user-friendly and intuitive guidance.
Kit and extending services launched
Next to the main kit Designit has created four, much smaller kits for use in specific situations: outdoor and in-car situations, sports injuries and finally for emergencies around children.
This case presents an entirely new way of thinking about first aid. The design is attractive, simple and logical. The goal is to create a new standard on the market that clearly distinguishes itself from the obsolete alternatives. This first aid kit delivers a truly intuitive and exclusive product at a low cost offering the best possibilities for the user to be action ready.
To top off Falck’s new product and the education of the users, the service offering accompanying the first aid kit has been proportionally upgraded to fulfil a simple subscription service such as inexpensive refill of material and a range of training courses that relate to specific needs.
Innovative design awarded
The first aid kit was awarded with an IF gold award in 2013 for its outstanding design.