First Aid – Medical Services Training
First Aid (OSHA 29 CFR 1910.151 or 1926.50): Trained, designated first-aid responders must be provided at each work location that is not in “near proximity” to medical assistance. Near proximity would be a response time of five minutes or less for local EMS.
First aid is emergency care provided for injury or sudden illness before emergency medical treatment is available. The first-aid provider in the workplace is someone who is trained in the delivery of initial medical emergency procedures, using a limited amount of equipment to perform a primary assessment and intervention while awaiting arrival of emergency medical service (EMS) personnel.
A workplace first-aid program is part of a comprehensive safety and health management system that includes the following four essential elements:
- Management Leadership and Employee Involvement
- Worksite Analysis
- Hazard Prevention and Control
- Safety and Health Training
Employers are required by OSHA standard 29 CFR 1910.151 to have a person or persons adequately trained to render first aid for worksites that are not in near proximity to an infirmary, clinic, or hospital. It is advised that the first-aid program for a particular workplace be designed to reflect the known and anticipated risks of the specific work environment. Consultation with local emergency medical experts and providers of first-aid training is encouraged when developing a first-aid program.
- The program must comply with all applicable OSHA standards and regulations. (See section on OSHA Requirements.) OSHA requires certain employers to have CPR-trained rescuers on site. Sudden cardiac arrest is a potential risk at all worksites, regardless of the type of work. Serious consideration should be given to establishing a workplace AED program.
- 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 worksite.
- 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.