‘Health and safety’ always has to be a primary consideration in the workplace and as well as maintaining a good level of awareness amongst employees it is also important to have someone to hand who knows the basics of first aid if it is needed.
Here is a look at the fundamentals of first aid and an insight into what should be in your emergency kit and how to use it in the event of an accident in the workplace.
No time to panic
If someone has fallen ill or been injured at work it is understandable to be concerned for their welfare but this is not the time to panic, as there are some basic steps that need to be taken in the event of an emergency, and remaining calm and in control of the situation can make a big difference to the outcome.
The first thing to do is assess the scene and the patient to see what is going on right now and draw an initial impression of the scenario so that you can form a plan of action.
You need to clarify that the scene is safe for you or anyone else to enter and get some idea of the extent of their injuries and whether they are life-threatening.
If you discover that the person is responsive and they are not bleeding or suffering any obvious serious injury you can prepare to use your first aid training once you have gained the patient’s permission to administer care.
If the patient is not responsive or suffering blood loss that could be life-threatening, or have sustained an obvious injury that requires hospital treatment, instruct someone to call 911 while you keep watch on the injured person.
Prepared for an emergency
Every workplace should have a designated first-aider who has received training in emergency procedures and the more employees who have that basic knowledge the better.
Emergency first aid training involves showing how to assess the extent of a person’s injuries and also how to administer the right initial treatment immediately after the incident in order to keep them stable and comfortable while further help arrives.
First aid training is only going to get you so far in an emergency situation and you will need access to a well-stocked first aid kit to be able to do the job you have been trained to do.
An online supplier like RS will be able to provide a first aid kit plus other medical supplies that you might need. Ideally, you want a kit that includes a range of dressings and bandages, a non-mercury thermometer, some surgical gloves, plus some sterile gauze pads, and a breathing barrier that has a one-way valve.
This is not an extensive list and you can get guidance on what to stock your first aid kit with as part of the training process or by viewing a range of kit options online.
Provided you have some basic first aid training and a comprehensive medical kit available to help administer immediate treatment where appropriate, you will be better placed to cope with a workplace emergency.