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Assessing Your First Aid Requirements

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Assessing Your First Aid Requirements

Trying to ensure you conform to all the masses of applicable first aid regulations can be a nightmare as there is no definitive set of rules that lay out exactly what your first aid provisions should be. The number of appointed persons or first aiders you need and the contents of your first aid box will depend on what kind of environment you work in and the likelihood of injury or accident according to the level of risk present.

To find out exactly what you need to make sure your employees, visitors and customers have access to appropriate first aid in the event of an accident or injury you must carry out a first aid risk assessment. You can get the assistance of a professional company to do this or you can invest on training for your staff to ensure you have someone on site who can identify and manage risks on a day to day basis.

The important factors

No matter what environment you work in, there are a number of things you should always consider when deciding on what equipment, facilities and personnel you need, such as:

The risk of injury and ill health in the workplace

This will change depending on the risks present in your workplace – so if you work in an office your risks will be much less serious than if you run a large commercial factory with hazardous chemicals.

Previous accident history

If you have a good track record for avoiding injuries and accidents, it may mean you mean less first aid provisions as the risks present at your workplace are obviously well managed.

Number of employees

This includes considering the specific needs of your employees, so if you have lots of inexperienced workers, disabled workers or workers with existing medical conditions, your first aid provisions should be adapted to suit this.

Shift work

If you run shifts you must ensure that every shift pattern has the required number of first aiders. This means you will require more first aiders than a similar business that only has one working shift.

Number of buildings/floors

You must also ensure that every area of your business has access to first aid provisions, so if your business is spread out over many floors or buildings far apart from each other, you may need more first aid provisions to ensure everyone can access the provisions quickly in an emergency.

This is just a few of the necessary elements you must consider when formulating your first aid plans, but regardless of how low your risk, or how few employees you have there is a minimum number of first aiders you will require to be legally compliant.

First Aiders

You must remember that this is just a guideline and your individual requirements will vary as you must ensure that there is always someone available to take control in first aid emergencies.

Low Risk (retail, office)

Up to 50 people – 1 appointed person

50 to 100 people – 1 first aider

Over 100 people – 1 first aider for every 100 people

Medium Risk (processing, engineering, warehousing)

Up to 20 people – 1 appointed person

20 to 100 people – 1 first aider for every 50 people

Over 100 people – 1 extra first aider for every 50 people

High Risk (construction, chemical, machinery)

Up to 5 people – 1 appointed person

5 to 50 people – 1 first aider for every 50 people

Over 100 people – 1 extra first aider for every 50 people

First Aid Kits

Although there is no set list of contents for your first aid kit, there are guidelines to ensure you consider the right factors when deciding on what you require and how many kits you need.

Firstly, you must ensure that everyone has access to a kit, which may mean you need one per 30 people, or one per floor, depending again on the level of risk and the amount of employees you have.

The contents of your kit will vary depending on your specific risks. For example, in an office you may require a very generic kit, but in a kitchen it is likely that you will need specialist equipment to deal with severe burns and scolds.

First Aid Training

To ensure you get everything right, and manage to understand and cater to the individual requirements of your employees and business you must ensure that you consult with a specialist training company to provide the relevant training for your employees. An experienced company such as Health and Safety Training Ltd can provide you with professional advice and take care of all your first aid training needs, from Risk Assessment Training to Emergency First Aid Training.

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