First Aid Acronyms – MIST

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First aid is usually performed by family members, friends, and often by strangers. The majority of which do not come from a medical background. In some cases further medical assistance may be required. The acronym MIST is used by first aiders when passing on/handing over information onto the next level of care. MIST can help you gather relevant information and pass it on to medical professionals. This information is extremely important in order to ensure that no vital details are lost between casualty carers.


The 4 parts of MIST are:

  • > Mechanism
  • > Injury/illness
  • > Signs and symptoms
  • > Treatment


you need to handover how the injury or illness occurred. How did the casualty become unwell? Were you present at the time or did you perhaps find them? What in particular was the mechanism of the injury? E.g. if the casualty was stabbed, the mechanism would be the object they were stabbed with.


What do you suspect the injury or illness to be? E.g. if someone has fallen over during a football match, the injury could be identified as a strain.

Signs & Symptoms

What was it that drew you to the casualty? How could you identify they needed help? What symptoms did they describe when you asked them what was wrong? E.g. the footballer mentioned above could be unable to get up, holding their leg, screaming in pain.


What treatment have you, or others provided? What have you done to prevent the condition from worsening or to prevent the pain? You may have elevated the footballers leg and got him into a comfy position. You may also want to gather further information from the casualty to handover to the medical professionals. For example, if the casualty is a stranger you could find out their name, age, if they have family, where they live. These are referred to as details, for some first aiders who wish to extend the acronym to DMIST.

First Aid In Wirral

Interested in undertaking one of our First Aid Courses in Wirral? Call us today on 0151 343 0588 to learn more. Alternatively, you can email us at [email protected] and a member of our team will get back to you as soon as possible.

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