While you should take the proper steps to ensure workplace injuries and illness do not happen, not everything can be avoided. Accidents are a risk you and your employees face every day, so it is important to be well prepared for them. One of the best things to do is have first aid be available in the workplace. Not only should you have first aid medical supplies, but preferably a policy to put your employees through basic first aid techniques to help a fellow worker in an emergency. This helps maintain an injury until emergency assistance arrives.
Types of First Aid in the Workplace
There are different types of first aid preparations you should have in the workplace. First of all, make sure you have first aid kits in multiple areas of your facility, and be sure they are well stocked. Create a schedule to have a designated person check and re-stock the first aid kits on a weekly basis. If something runs out completely, ask employees to let someone know right away. There should also be a handful of employees who are trained and certified in first aid, so that they can be called upon in an emergency. What is needed in your business will depend on the type of business you have and what your hazards are.
Benefits of First Aid and CPR
There are more benefits to first aid and CPR instruction than helping out employees who find themselves in an emergency situation, though this is one of the primary benefits. Consider the fact that when employees learn more about how to help others in these situations, they are also educating themselves on what not to do. It puts a significant emphasis on safety in the workplace. It can also help in more critical situations, as can occur due to a traffic or a bad storm when it may take longer for ambulance to arrive. Emergencies are handled more quickly when employees know how to quickly find the first aid kit and how to use what is in it.
Three Steps Toward Proactive First Aid
Follow these steps to start being more proactive with your first aid:
1) Learn more. Educate yourself and your employees on proper CPR and first aid techniques. According to the American Heart Association, someone who goes into cardiac arrest and is given CPR, is 2-3 times more likely to survive. Learn about all types of injuries as well, including neck injuries, falls and burns.
2) Become certified. Select employees to go through an official certification process for first aid and CPR. These are often given by the American Red Cross and similar organizations. It helps to have one person from each major department in your business.
3) Establish a first aid training program. Introduce a first aid training program to put all employees through. Guide them through the contents of the first aid kit and how to treat the injured or ill with these items. Again, the content depends on your type of business. If you run a construction company, teach employees to recognize heat stroke in other workers and how to help them.
Aside from being more proactive with first aid in the workplace, also be sure to have the appropriate insurance coverage. You should, at a minimum, have workers’ compensation insurance for employee injuries, as well as general liability insurance.