First Aid responsibilities

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First Aid responsibilities

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Do you know what the law expects of you, as an employer to provide first aid requirements? Take a look at a guide here.

The Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981 require employers to provide adequate and appropriate equipment, facilities and personnel to ensure their employees receive immediate attention if they are injured or taken ill at work. These Regulations apply to all workplaces including those with less than five employees and to the self-employed. What is ‘adequate and appropriate’ will depend on the circumstances in the workplace.

Regulations require, as a minimum,  a first-aid box and a person appointed to take charge of first-aid arrangements, such as calling the emergency services if necessary. An assessment of first aid provision will identify your requirements.

Employers must provide information about first-aid arrangements to their employees.

You have no legal responsibility for non-employees, such as the public or students in schools and colleges, but HSE strongly recommends you include them in your assessment of first-aid provision for your workplace.

You must however ensure you have :

  • A first aid kit readily available at all work places
  • Appointed someone to take charge of first aid and keep the first aid kit fully stocked
  • A qualified first aider available at all times, to cover shift patterns, holidays etc

First Aid Provision

The number of first aiders or appointed persons you might need will depend on the circumstances of the organisation or worksite. You are required to carry out an assessment of first aid needs, considering your workplace hazards and risks, the size of your organisation and other relevant factors to determine what first aid equipment, facilities and personnel should be provided. The following are suggestions only.  You should assess your first-aid needs in the light of your particular circumstances.
Here is a guide calculating your first aid provision requirements

A work place of:

Low Hazard e.g. a shop or office

  • Fewer than 25 employees’ –  then at least one appointed person.
  • 25 – 50  employees  at least one first aider trained in Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW).
  • More than 50  employees –  at least one first aider for every 100 employees’, then one additional first aider for every 100 employees or part thereof.

Higher Hazard – e.g. – light engineering and assembly work, food processing, warehousing, extensive work with dangerous machinery or sharp instruments, construction, chemical manufacture

  • Less than 5 employees – At least one appointed person
  • 5-50 employees – At least one first-aider trained in EFAW or FAW depending on the type of injuries that might occur
  • More than 50 employees – At least one first-aider trained in FAW for every 50 employed (or part thereof).

Other relevant factors to consider:

  1. You must consider if there are any specific risks e.g. working with:
  • Hazardous substances
  • Dangerous tools
  • Dangerous machinery
  • Hot Water Temperatures
  • Hot Surfaces
  • Dangerous loads or animals

If this is the case you will need to consider:

  • Specific training for first aiders
  • Extra first aid equipment and staff
  • Precise siting of first aid equipment
  1. If there are inexperienced workers on site, or employees with disabilities or special health problems:

You will need to consider:

  • Special equipment
  • Local siting of equipment
  1. If your premises are spread out e.g. several buildings on the site or a multi-floor building:

You will need to consider:

  • provision in each building or on several floors
  1. If shift-work or out-of-hours working take place, or cover for holidays, sickness etc.:
  • Remember that there needs to be first-aid provision at all times people are at work
  1. If the workplace is remote from emergency medical services:
  • You will need to inform local medical services of your location and
  • consider special arrangements with the emergency services
  1. For employees who travel a lot or work alone or remotely:
  • You will need to consider issuing personal first-aid kits and
  • training staff in their use and issuing personal communicators to employees
  1. If any of your employees work at sites occupied by other employers:
  • You will need to make arrangements with the other site occupiers
  1. Any work experience trainees will have to have first aid provision made for them
  2. You have no legal responsibility for non-employees, e.g. for members of the public, service users visiting your premises, but HSE strongly recommends you include them in your first-aid provision.

have a look at our events calendar page to see upcoming first aid courses

Reporting accidents and ill health at work is a legal requirement

Organisations need to record accidents at work in a prescribed way and can use an accident book available from various suppliers referred to as a BI 510. You should always ensure a full written account is made of any accident occurring on your premises, either to an employee, customer or visitor and good practice is that an investigation is undertaken to establish the cause and prevent a recurrence.

Certain types of accidents must be reported to the enforcing authority and your insurer may need to be made aware of the details.

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By | 2018-01-29T15:25:50+00:00 January 15th, 2018|Categories: blog|0 Comments

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