When running a business Health and Safety is often a topic that is over looked. It’s always best to be prepared to handle any kind of medical emergency. First aid training is an important part of health and safety. When doing first aid training, having a first aid kit containing all the equipment and supplies needed to ensure you’re ready to take care of the medical incidents that could happen in the work place.
There is also legal reasons for you to pay attention to having first aid kit: The Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981 require employers to provide adequate and appropriate equipment, facilities and personnel to ensure that employees receive immediate attention if they are injured or taken ill at work. These regulations apply to all workplaces including those with fewer than five employees and to the self-employed.
However, there has historically not been much in the way of guidance on what a first aid kit should contain. This means that in the event of an emergency, some companies and businesses find that their first aid kits lack the essentials, or include out-dated or inadequate components that are of limited use to the first aider. For example, often first aid kits don’t contain enough wipes, gloves or plasters, so employers might have to buy additional first aid supplies to supplement their first aid kit.
The British Healthcare Trade Association has worked been working with the British Standards Institute (BSI) together with the NHS, to create a new British standard for first aid kits in the workplace. Some changes include:
- increased number of disposable gloves;
- introduction of smaller absorbent wound dressings for finger injuries, where a plaster will not be sufficient;
- introduction of tear-able non woven, hypoallergenic adhesive tape to secure bandages without using safety pins;
- introduction of water-based sterile gel burn dressings (which do not require any pre-cooling with water) and a conforming bandage to secure it;
As a business owner, or someone running business health and safety is often a topic that skips your mind, or is not in the top priority. However by having a first aid kit at work, and members of staff who have first aid training you can assure the health and safety of all your team.
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