First aid

Last reviewed on 25/06/2014 11:10

The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations require you to provide adequate and appropriate equipment, facilities and personnel in the event of employees becoming ill or injured at work.

To achieve this, you must assess the needs for your organisation. A number of factors should be considered, including:

  • The type of work being undertaken and the associated risks
  • The number of employees
  • The size of the workplace and distance from medical services
  • Lone working or working away from base or on other premises.

First aid kit requirements

As an absolute minimum the following measures should be in place:

  • Provide an adequately stocked first aid kit. This should include sterile materials to dress a wound, bandages and a pair of non-latex/disposable gloves.
  • Appoint someone to take charge in an emergency (the findings of your risk assessment can help determine the level of training, if any, that is needed for your organisation).
  • Ensure that all staff are aware of first aid cover and that cover is provided during absence. This will mean designating more than one person. Signage with name(s) should be displayed.
  • The appointed person should never attempt to give first aid for which they have not been trained.
  • It is good practice to record all accidents and any first aid administered. This should be recorded in an accident book.
  • Tablets or medicines should not be kept in the first aid kit.

Further information

Healthy Working Lives have produced further guidance around first aid at work, including trained first aiders, first aid boxes and training,

You can also call our Adviceline for free confidential advice, to request a workplace visit, or to register for our Award programme which recognises and accredits good practice.