OSHA Provides Best Practices Guide for First Aid Programs

May 22, 2006
OSHA has released a new guide Best Practices Guide: Fundamentals of a Workplace First Aid Program to help employers and employees develop workplace first aid programs.

"Workplace first aid program is a key component of any comprehensive safety and health management system," said OSHA Administrator Edwin Foulke Jr. "Our new guide offers practical information on how to help employers plan and implement first aid programs as well as effective training."

The new OSHA guide identifies four essential elements for first aid programs to be effective and successful: management leadership and employee involvement, worksite analysis, hazard prevention and control and safety and health training.

The guide details the primary components of a first aid program at the workplace. Those elements include:

Identifying and assessing workplace risks.

Designing a program that is specific to the worksite and complies with OSHA first aid requirements.

Instructing all workers about the program, including what to do if a co-worker is injured or ill.

Evaluating and modifying program to keep it current, including regular assessment of the first aid training course.

The guide also includes best practices for planning and conducting effective first aid training. OSHA recommends that training courses include instruction in general and workplace hazard-specific knowledge and skills, incorporating automated external defibrillator (AED) training into CPR training if an AED is available at the worksite and periodically repeat first aid training to help maintain and update knowledge and skills.

The guide is available at http://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3317first-aid.pdf.

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