First Aid skills can prove critical in emergency situations and can even help save a life in certain circumstances which makes them priceless and invaluable. Despite being somewhat necessary skills, often First Aid training can be overlooked until a crisis occurs. Yet, in the workplace, it should never be. In this blog, we’ll be discussing the elements needed to be First Aid prepared, the benefits they could bring and the lives they could save.
First Aid Kit
One essential element of being prepared is to have a First Aid kit on hand, especially in your work environment. Most people purchase premade first-aid kits to save time and money compared to buying individual supplies and assembling a kit. Another reason to choose a premade kit is to ensure you don’t overlook any important supplies or tools. However, if you choose to create your own, be sure to include plasters in a variety of shapes and sizes; small, medium and large sterile gauze dressings; sterile eye dressings; triangular bandages; crêpe rolled bandages; safety pins; disposable sterile gloves and tweezers as ultimate necessities. For more suggestions of what to keep in your First Aid kit, visit the NHS website here.
Treat minor injuries
Between 2016/2017, there were 609,000 self-reported non-fatal injuries to workers in the UK including slips and trips; injuries from lifting and being struck by moving items. Clearly, first Aid Trained individuals are unable to treat all of these minor injuries, but having someone on hand who knows how to clean and dress a wound effectively could prevent further infections and issues down the line. Items to help treat these issues should be present in your workplace First Aid Kit.
Adult resuscitation (CPR) and Defibrillation
Probably one of the most important element of First Aid training is adult resuscitation or CPR as it’s more commonly referred to. When an individual is struggling with signs of a cardiac arrest, there are correct steps to take towards dealing with this crisis. A cardiac arrest is Medical Emergency and a person’s chances of survival can be increased by the following steps:
- Phoning 999 immediately
- Giving CPR – Immediate CPR will keep oxygen circulating around the body until a defibrillator can be used and/or until the emergency services arrive.
- When someone has a cardiac arrest, every minute without CPR and defibrillation reduces their chances of survival by 7-10% and research shows that without immediate treatment, 90-95% of sudden cardiac arrest victims will die. So, having someone on hand who can perform this procedure can truly be lifesaving.
Appoint a dedicated First Aider
All employers have the responsibility to have a dedicated and competent First Aider on hand to deal with any crisis situations during work hours. Depending on the number of staff members you have and work patterns, you may need to have multiple employees trained in First Aid. However, as a minimum, you need to supply a First Aid kit fit for use, train your appointed members of staff in First Aid and have a structure in place for emergency situations.