How and When to Review Your First Aid Arrangements
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There is nothing like a real first aid emergency to test whether your first aid response, treatment and procedures are adequate and effective. And you certainly do not want to fail the test of a real life situation.
Hopefully you do not have a real life first aid emergency to review but you can always set up a number of mock first aid emergencies to cover various hazard and risk scenarios that are relevant to your workplace and review those.
This article has been written to provide information and ideas on when and how to review and test your first aid systems and delivery.
When and How to Review
The First Aid in the Workplace Code of Practice has recommendations about this on page 16 of the Code.
“You should regularly review your first aid arrangements in consultation with your workers to ensure they remain adequate and effective.
- Check that the people who have responsibilities under your first aid procedures are familiar with them.
- If the way work is performed is changed, or new work practices introduced, review first aid against a risk assessment to ensure the arrangements are still adequate.
- Organise a mock first aid emergency to check that first aid is effective. Check that kits and first aid rooms are accessible and suit the hazards that are unique to your workplace.
- If an incident has occurred that required first aid, evaluate the effectiveness of the first aid that was provided and make changes if necessary.
- If new information is obtained about a previously unidentified hazard, review the first aid measures you have put in place.”
Questions to Assist Your Review
The Code at page 16 recommends that you use the following questions to assist you to review first aid and assess whether improvement is needed:
- “Do the first aid kits and modules suit the hazards at your workplace?
- Are more first aid kits required?
- Are first aid kits accessible to workers?
- Are first aid kits well maintained and identifiable to workers?
- Is a first aid room or health centre required?
- Are first aid facilities well maintained?
- Do first aiders have the skills and competencies required of them and are their skills up-to-date?
- Do workers know how to access first aiders?
- Are more first aiders needed?
- Do workers have access to first aiders at all times? Do workers and other people know what to do in an emergency situation?
- Is there easy access for emergency services, such as parking for an ambulance?”
“This Code of Practice on First Aid in the Workplace is an approved code of practice under section 274 of the Work Health and Safety Act (the WHS Act).
An approved code of practice is a practical guide to achieving the standards of health, safety and welfare required under the WHS Act and the Work Health and Safety Regulations (the WHS Regulations).”