<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=106872846720757&amp;ev=PageView &amp;noscript=1">

Workplace First Aid: Critical Steps to Ensure You Are Prepared

Julie Copeland

Posted by

In an emergency, every second can be critical. Having trained employees, who know immediately what to do can save lives.

First aid is emergency care provided for injury or sudden illness before emergency medical treatment is available. The first aid provider is someone in the workplace who is trained to deliver initial medical emergency procedures, while awaiting the arrival of emergency medical service (EMS) personnel.

Copy of Shocking Costs Electrical Incidents (7).png

First aid provides the initial and immediate attention to a person suffering an injury or illness, and in extreme cases can mean the difference between life and death. First aid can help reduce the severity of the injury or illness, and can also calm the injured person, reducing stress and anxiety.

Planning for emergencies will help prepare your employees for when accidents happen. It’s important that your workers understand what is expected of them in an emergency. A designated worker, or workers should have access to first aid supplies and understand how to use them.

According to OSHA, it is advisable for employers to assign a specific person to choose the types and amounts of first aid supplies and maintain the supplies. There should be an adequate amount of supplies, that reflect the kinds of injuries that occur in the workplace. The supplies should be stored together in a first aid kit, and be readily available for emergency access.

OSHA Recommends:

  • First aid supplies must be available in adequate quantities and be readily accessible.

  • First aid training courses should include instruction in general and workplace hazard-specific knowledge and skills. CPR training should incorporate AED training if an AED is available at the work site. First aid training should be repeated periodically to maintain and update knowledge and skills.

  • Management commitment and worker involvement is vital in developing, implementing and assessing a workplace first aid program.

  • Before purchasing first aid materials, it is important to evaluate which supplies are needed based on the types of injury that may occur.  Kits should be monitored regularly to ensure the correct supplies are available and adjustments should be made as necessary.

  • Employers have the legal responsibility to ensure adequate first aid supplies are readily available for employees.  OSHA does not have a minimum requirement for the contents of a first aid kit, but references ANSI Z308.1-2003 – Minimum requirements for workplace first aid kits.

The hazard assessment chart below is not a complete list but can be used to help identify the types of injuries and illnesses requiring first aid.





Manual handling

Overexertion/Repetitive movement

Sprains, strains, fractures


Falls from heights, slips and trips on uneven surfaces

Fractures, bruises, cuts, dislocations, concussion


Contact with electrical current

Shock, burns, loss of consciousness, cardiac arrest


Being hit by projectiles, striking objects, being caught in machinery, overturning vehicles

Cuts, bruises, dislocations, dermatitis, fractures, amputation, eye damage

Hazardous substances

Exposure to chemicals, e.g. solvents, acids, hydrocarbons

Dizziness, vomiting, respiratory problems, burns to skin or eyes

Temperature, UV radiation

Effects of heat or cold from weather or work environment

Sunburn, frostbite, heat stress, heat stroke, hypothermia


Allergens, needle stick, exposure to infectious agents

Severe allergic reaction, injuries, skin rash, infection

Occupational violence

Intimidation, conflict, physical assault

Nausea, shock, collapse, physical injuries

Emergencies happen in an instant. Your employees’ safety depends on having the right resources available to handle every situation.

Make sure you are prepared for critical emergencies, with Arbill’s extensive collection of first aid and safety products. Learn about our First Aid training and schedule a free safety assessment with an Arbill Safety Expert today.

Have a Safe Day!


Topics: workplace safety, first aid, emergency training

Latest Posts