First aid is an important, immediate response to any accident that might occur in the workplace. Accidents range from light bruises to dangerous cuts, sprained ankles, and other serious injuries. In desperate cases, a first aid treatment can be considered as a life-saving measure.
A company should consider four factors before it implements training to its select employees. The first one is the type of industry where one is supposed to perform first aid. Second is the average number of people in the workplace. Third is the number and frequency of work shifts. The fourth would be the location of the workplace with reference to the nearest hospital.
Who should be responsible for providing first aid training?
In the case of a workplace where multiple employers are involved, the principal employer should be responsible in making sure that there is a treatment facility in the premises of the business. Aside from the treatment facility, or in other terms, the first aid room, he or she should also designate competent first-aiders. In addition, he or she should also provide a good supply of boxes and equipment.
Sometimes, relevant employers agree amongst themselves as to who gets to provide what. This agreement is put into writing. Every related party gets a copy of it.
On another note, the principal employer should impose adequate measures to keep the workplace as safe as possible so that accidents are less likely to happen.
The employer is expected to choose certain persons to go on training (and retraining). They should be physically and mentally fit, free from blood borne diseases, and available to leave their work immediately in case of an emergency. Usually, they have identification cards with them that state their status as certified first aiders. The employer/s should post their names and their location at a prominent place in the workplace.
When it comes to training first aiders, the training facility should be one that is accredited by a recognized institution. The local telephone book is filled with numbers of companies that give training courses, so finding and contacting one is not a problem. Trainers can either come at the workplace or the other way around, depending on the number of trainees. After passing the course, first aiders are scheduled for a refresher (usually not more than 5 years). It is the employer’s responsibility to keep a record of these important dates.
The task of a first aider
In the event of an emergency, the first aider should give immediate treatment to the patient or victim. He or she should keep in mind that the casualty could be more serious than what is obvious. It is therefore needed that the victim be brought to the hospital if he or she thinks treatment is not enough. He or she is tasked to make arrangements regarding which hospital to go to or which doctor to see.
After the treatment
The responsibility ends when the injured is already in the hands of health care personnel. The first aider then hands over the record of the incident. The employer keeps this for a period of 5 years.
- The treatment given
- Medications administered, if any
- Details about the accident and the work process involved
- Details about the injury or work-related illness
- Arrangements such as request of an ambulance service and hospital referral
- Subsequent injury management
First aid box
First aid boxes are portable and made of sturdy material. There is usually a content list on the inside. These should be placed somewhere accessible.
These boxes should be properly labeled. Some have the Red Cross symbol on it, which makes it easy to tell that it’s for medical purposes. Also, the number of first aid boxes must be in proportion to the number of people working around the area.
It is important to note oral medication of any kind is not needed. It is also helpful to put a reference sheet as a handy guide for quick injury analysis. Lastly, the first aid box’s contents should always be adequate.