Skip to main content

Why Take First Aid Seriously?

Flagship TrainingHealth & Safety

Why Take First Aid Seriously?

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”no” hundred_percent_height=”no” hundred_percent_height_scroll=”no” hundred_percent_height_center_content=”yes” equal_height_columns=”no” menu_anchor=”” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” status=”published” publish_date=”” class=”” id=”” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_position=”center center” background_repeat=”no-repeat” fade=”no” background_parallax=”none” enable_mobile=”no” parallax_speed=”0.3″ video_mp4=”” video_webm=”” video_ogv=”” video_url=”” video_aspect_ratio=”16:9″ video_loop=”yes” video_mute=”yes” video_preview_image=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” padding_top=”” padding_right=”” padding_bottom=”” padding_left=””][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ layout=”1_1″ spacing=”” center_content=”no” link=”” target=”_self” min_height=”” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” class=”” id=”” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_image_id=”” background_position=”left top” background_repeat=”no-repeat” hover_type=”none” border_size=”0″ border_color=”” border_style=”solid” border_position=”all” border_radius=”” box_shadow=”no” dimension_box_shadow=”” box_shadow_blur=”0″ box_shadow_spread=”0″ box_shadow_color=”” box_shadow_style=”” padding_top=”” padding_right=”” padding_bottom=”” padding_left=”” margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” animation_type=”” animation_direction=”left” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_offset=”” last=”no”][fusion_text columns=”” column_min_width=”” column_spacing=”” rule_style=”default” rule_size=”” rule_color=”” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” class=”” id=””]

All businesses should take their health and safety first aid responsibilities seriously, regardless of the size of the company and the industry you operate in. Whilst certain organisations or job roles may be more hazardous than others, you have a duty of care towards all employees.

With various rules and regulations governing workplace safety, it can be difficult to determine exactly what your responsibilities are. However, employers can face fines, sanctions and even prosecution if they fail to adhere to health and safety legislation.

Due to the importance of maintaining a safe working environment, it’s vital you assess the risks in your workplace and ensure you have sufficient first aiders and first aid equipment on hand, if and when it’s needed.

All businesses must have a designated person to take charge of first aid arrangements. Whilst many businesses must also have a trained first aider on the premises, allocating the duties of first aid arrangement to a specific individual is the minimum requirement and it applies to all employers.

How many first aid kits does a company legally need?

The number of first aid kits required will vary depending on the number of employees working at the premises and the hazards associated with your business. Employers have a duty to assess their working environment in order to determine how many first aid kits are required.

However, the BS 8599-1 standard can be used as guidance when it comes to determining how many first aid kits you should have in the workplace. In low hazard environments, the standard suggests that organisations with fewer than 25 employees have at least 1 small sized first aid kit, whilst low hazard workplaces with between 25-100 employees should have at least 1 medium sized first aid kit available. In low hazard working environments with over 100 employees, the standard indicates that there should be at least 1 large first aid kit for every 100 employees.

If your workplace is more hazardous, you will need to have more first aid kits on the premises. According to BS 8599-1, high hazard workplaces with fewer than 5 employees should have at least 1 small size kit, those with 5-25 employees should have 1 medium sized first aid kit and workspaces with more than 25 employees should have at least 1 large first aid kit for every 25 employees.

Although the BS 85599-1 standard provides guidance in this area, these are not legislative minimums. If in doubt, it’s usually advisable to increase the number of first aid kits in the workplace.

Do you legally have to have a first aider at work?

Every workplace must have an individual who is in charge of first aid arrangements, but you may be required to have trained first aid personnel too. In low hazard workplaces with 25-50 employees, it’s suggested that businesses should have at least one first aider who is trained in Emergency First Aid at Work, whilst businesses with 50-100 employees should have at least one first aider who is trained in First Aid at Work for every 100 employees.

In high hazard workplaces, a higher number of trained first aid personnel are required. Businesses which employ 5-50 people will need at least one first aider who is trained in Emergency First Aid at Work, whilst organisations which employ more than 50 people will require at least one first aider who is trained in First Aid at Work for every 100 employees.

However, you may need to consider whether your appointed first aiders also require additional training, depending on the hazards present in your workplace. Again, these are merely guidelines and not firm regulations. You may prefer to increase the number of trained first aiders to ensure that you exceed the minimum requirements.

Remember – if your business needs to have a trained first aider, you must ensure that an appropriately qualified person is on the premises during all working hours. This may mean training a number of staff in first aid so that a certified first aider is always on duty at the workplace.

What are the 5 principles of first aid?

First aiders should ensure the 5 principles of first aid are applied when a medical emergency occurs. These are:

  • Preserve life
  • Ensure the area is safe and protect the individual from sustaining further harm
  • Provide non-medicinal pain relief, if possible. Medications should only be administered in certain situations and when the relevant first aider has been trained appropriately.
  • Make sure the individual’s condition doesn’t worsen due to first aid treatment applied
  • Give reassurance to the individual

What are the principles of a first aider?

First aiders will typically provide care before a medical professional can access the scene. Depending on their training and certification, they may be able to provide life-saving interventions, emergency assistance and paediatric treatment.

However, first aiders should always focus on the main principles of providing urgent care. These include:

  • Calling for help from the emergency services, if required
  • Staying calm
  • Preserve life
  • Prevent deterioration
  • Promote recovery

Is a first aid room a legal requirement?

In general, smaller businesses which are deemed to be a low hazard aren’t usually required to have a first aid room. However, each workplace should be assessed individually to determine whether a first aid room should be provided. If you employ a large number of employees or operate a hazardous workplace, a first aid room may be beneficial.

Ultimately, your risk assessment will help you to determine what first aid facilities are required, and it is an employer’s duty to carry this assessment out. Whilst a first aid room may not be legally required, your risk assessment may indicate that your workplace should have this facility in place due to certain issues, such as the risk of injury to employees or the difficulty in accessing a private space in which to administer first aid.

Can anyone be a first aider?

Anyone over the age of 18 can become a first aider, but it’s important to select employees who are willing to provide first aid care and who are calm in a crisis. Providing they have the right ability, are reliable and able to respond quickly to urgent situations, any employee over the age of 18 can undertake the requisite first aid training.