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First Aid – What are the Requirements

Having adequate first aid measures in place to deal with the potential accidents, injuries, or ill health at work is an incredibly vital part of an organization or workplace’s safety and health procedures. First aid is of vital importance as it can prevent life from fatal injuries or ill-health and promote a safety awareness culture within the workplace.

According to a study by Health and Safety Executive (HSE), nearly 111 workers were killed at work, 0.7 workers sustained a non-fatal injury, 65,427 non-fatal injuries were reported, 1.6 million cases of work-related ill health were seen, and 38.8 million working days were lost due to work-related ill health every year.

What is First Aid?

First aid is the instant medical assistance provided to someone in need suffering from an accident, injury, or ill health.

First can be provided by anyone who is proficiently trained on this subject until professional medical help arrives at the location. There are certain scenarios where workers may require first aid during work hours. Therefore, employers must ensure that their employees know the basics of first aid at work to respond efficiently in case of an emergency.

What is the Legal Requirement of First Aid at Work?

The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 require companies to offer suitable and appropriate tools, facilities, and individuals to make sure their staff members get instant assistance if they are injured or ill at work.

These regulations apply to all workplaces, including those with less than five and the self-employed. The proper and adequate training needs depend on the circumstances in the workplace.

Employers must conduct assessments of first aid needs to determine what to provide within a workplace.

The regulations do not put any legal duty on employers to provide first aid assistance to non-employees or other public. However, HSE recommends that non-employees are involved in the examination of the first aid needs, and so does the provision make for them.

How Many are First Aiders Required by Law?

According to the law, employers must ensure that they provide adequate and appropriate first aid facilities and staff in the workplace or organization. Therefore, to ensure the adequate number of first aiders needed within the workplace, employers must conduct a proper risk assessment. It will help them get a better idea of the number of first aiders needed and how to legally comply with the law.

First Aid Needs Assessment

Undertaking a first aid needs assessment will help businesses and their employers recognize what kind of first aid training will their first aiders need, how many first aiders are required within their workplace, and where they should be located.

There is no need for any formal or written document for first aid assessment to be written down. However, it will be useful for employers to record the results to justify their levels of first aid provisions within their work environment.

How much first aid provision an employer has to make depends on the circumstances of the work environment.

How to Carry Out First Aid Needs Assessment?

Conducting a first aid needs assessment may seem to be an intimidating task, but it does not need to be. Its purpose is to ensure that there are suitable provisions in place in case of an accident, incident, or emergency.

As an employer, you can use this assessment to demonstrate to a local authority how you decided what level of first aid provision is needed for your specific workplace.

Employers must consider the following things when undertaking first aid needs assessment:

  • What type of work is carried out?
  • What level of hazards a workplace has?
  • The previous accident history of the workplace
  • Does the workplace have any lone workers?
  • The size of the employees
  • What is the nature of the employees, for example, youngsters, people with health problems, or trainees?
  • Do you have a large number of visitors at work?

Along with this, when carrying out a first aid needs assessment, you need to take account of everyday activities and work operations within your workplace to identify the number of first aiders needed.

First Aid Training Courses

Alongside the first aid needs assessment, one effective thing you can do for your employees is to provide them with suitable first aid training courses. The first aid at work course helps them identify the nature of risks in a workplace. It also helps them understand the safety legislation better and effective ways to comply with the law.


This post is a detailed explanation of what first aid is and what are the legal requirements that businesses and employers must follow to ensure their workplace is safe and have a suitable number of first aiders trained in case of emergency.

The number of professional first aiders needed depends on the size and nature of the workplace; however, employers must ensure that their staff is trained enough to work competently to comply with the law.