The health kit (or health pack) is a first aid kit containing the standard combat wound treatment, which is used by all UNSC combat personnel, ranging from Marines to even Spartans. Each health kit contains an amount of biofoam, a stitch kit, polypseudomorphine, self-adhering antiseptic battle dressings, and other useful field dressing components.
Health kits are standard requirements aboard many UNSC ships for medical events. Health kits are often seen on corridor walls at regular intervals. There are also two health kits located in a Pelican. Both of them are on each side of the door to the cockpit. They seem to be more rectangular in shape than regular health kits and are inaccessible to the player.
The health kits are present in Halo: Combat Evolved (and its remake), Halo 3: ODST and Halo: Reach only. In Halo: Combat Evolved, the health kit would refill the player's health, but would have no effect on their shields. In Halo 2 and Halo 3, health regenerates with an integrated biofoam dispenser within the new MJOLNIR Mk VI. In Halo 3: ODST, the health kits are dispensed from Optican Medical Kiosks and they use a privately-manufactured healing agent known as MediGel. In Halo: Reach, the health kits are nearly identical to those seen in Halo: Combat Evolved, with a noticeable difference being the change of the symbol from a red cross to a red uppercase letter "H."
In Halo Combat Evolved, health kits are best used after combat. There are two reasons for this.
- Your characters shields may be down, so the regenerated health may be lost again.
- The white flash caused by picking one of these up will blind you for a period of about 1–2 seconds. This gives opponents a chance to attack.
In Halo: Reach, health kits restore your health to full, and cause your shields to immediately begin recharging, making them somewhat more effective than in Halo: Combat Evolved, although the recharge effect will still be halted if the user takes damage while the shields recharge.
- When you use a health kit for the first time in Halo 3: ODST, you are awarded the Heal Up Achievement.
- Likewise, picking up a health kit for the first time in Halo: Reach you unlock the Doctor, Doctor achievement.
- When a health kit is picked up, the player will become momentarily blinded by a white flash. However, this goes away instantly if passing through a teleporter.
- The reason why the red cross was removed from health kits is that the International Red Cross objected to the use of red cross symbols in inappropriate contexts. Around 2006, after the release of Halo 2, the Red Cross took the position that use of red cross symbols in video game "health kits" is inappropriate, and game developers ceased using them.
- In Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 3: ODST, you would use a health kit right when you walk up to it. In Halo: Reach, however, you have to hold X to use a health kit. This made a big difference as it isn't as easy to accidentally use a health kit if you didn't need to.
- The only words clearly visible on the Halo 3: ODST health kit are "Optican" and "Medi-Gel." Both are possible "7" references as they both contain 7 letters.
- In some of the Halo 2: Anniversary cutscenes, health kits can be seen in the Pelican in the same location they appear in Halo: Combat Evolved.