Health and Safety in the Workplace Level 2 (VTQ)

70 videos, 3 hours and 20 minutes

Course Content

First Aid Provision - First Aiders in the Workplace

Video 33 of 70
4 min 4 sec
English
English
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In every workplace, there needs to be a correct provision of first aid equipment, training and provision.  The main guidelines are laid down in the First Aid at Work Regulations 1981 approved code of practice. There are different updates made to this regulation which can be found on your student login under the downloads section.

Employers have a legal duty to make arrangements to ensure their employees receive immediate attention if they are injured or taken ill at work. It doesn’t matter whether the injury or illness is caused by the work they do. What is important is that they receive immediate attention and that an ambulance is called in serious cases. First aid can save lives and prevent minor injuries from becoming major ones. First aid at work covers the arrangements that need to be made to manage injuries or illness suffered at work. The Regulations do not prevent staff, who are specially trained, from taking action beyond the initial management stage.

An employer should make an assessment of first-aid needs appropriate to the circumstances of each workplace. The aim of first aid is to reduce the effects of injury or illness suffered at work, whether caused by the work itself or not. The first-aid provision must be ‘adequate and appropriate in the circumstances’. This means that sufficient first-aid equipment, facilities and personnel should be available:

  • To give immediate assistance to casualties with both common injuries or illness and those likely to arise from specific hazards at work;
  • To summon an ambulance or other professional help.

Where an employer provides first-aiders in the workplace, they should have a valid certificate of competence in either first aid at work (FAW) or emergency first aid at work (EFAW). EFAW training enables a first-aider to give emergency first aid to someone who is injured or becomes ill while at work. FAW training includes EFAW and also equips the first-aider to apply first aid to a range of specific injuries and illness.  If an employer decides a first-aider is not required in the workplace, a person should be appointed to take charge of the first-aid arrangements. The role of this appointed person includes looking after the first-aid equipment and facilities and calling the emergency services when required. They can also provide emergency cover where a first-aider is absent due to unforeseen circumstances.

How much first-aid provision an employer has to make depends on the circumstances of each workplace. There is no fixed level but each employer needs to assess what equipment, facilities and personnel are appropriate. Where employers have an occupational health service or access to other occupational health advice, they might wish to delegate to them the responsibility for carrying out the assessment and advising on the first-aid provision.

There is no requirement for the assessment of first-aid needs to be formal or written down although it may be useful for employers to record the results. Employers might need to justify their level of the first-aid provision.  In assessing their needs, employers should consider:

  • The nature of the work and workplace hazards and risks
  • The size of the organisation
  • The nature of the workforce
  • The organisation’s history of accidents
  • The needs of travelling, remote and lone workers
  • Work patterns
  • The distribution of the workforce
  • The remoteness of the site from emergency medical services
  • Employees working on shared or multi-occupied sites
  • Annual leave and other absences of first-aiders and appointed persons
  • First-aid provision for non-employees.