Did you know that every 7 seconds, there is a workplace injury in the US? That’s a staggering 4.7 million injured workers per year. While employers are not required to have medical personnel on staff, OSHA does require businesses to have first aid kits available.
While the first aid kit contents vary by industry, there are some standard items that are recommended. Keep reading for more information about workplace first aid kits and what they should contain.
What Does the Law Require?
OSHA requires employers to ensure that medical treatment is available in “near proximity.” If medical treatment isn’t available nearby, someone from the workplace must be trained to provide first aid treatment.
The training should cover basic first aid procedures as well as any aid that might be unique to the working environment. In addition, first aid supplies should be readily available to employees.
Another important question is how big of a supply of first aid items does a workplace need? To figure that out, you should consider what kind of hazards your workplace has (the hazards in a factory are probably more severe than the hazards in the office, for example) and how many employees you have.
A job safety analysis can help you identify areas where your business could improve.
First Aid Kit Contents: Must-Have Items
A safety equipment supplier can provide all of these supplies for your business.
- small and large sterile gauze pads
- roller gauze or bandage
- adhesive bandages
- wound cleaner/alcohol swabs
- scissors and tape
- latex gloves
- burn dressing and burn treatment
- hand sanitizer
- cold pack
- resuscitative face shield with gloves
- up-to-date first aid manual
- directions to get emergency assistance
While OSHA doesn’t regulate what should be in each first aid kit, they do recommend that, at a minimum, they contain the contents above. These recommended contents come from the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) recommendations for workplace first aid kits.
First Aid Kit Container Types
The container holding these items is just as important as the first aid kit contents. The type of container you need depends on what kind of workplace you have. Type I first aid kits are usually mounted on the wall or somewhere else. Type II kits are portable and are meant to be used indoors.
Type III kits are portable and meant to be used in mobile settings, either indoor or outdoor. Finally, Type IV kits are portable and can be used in outdoor settings. Due to the possibility of damage to these kits, as a result of the industries where they are used, they must meet guidelines for moisture, corrosion, and impact resistance.
As an employer, keeping your employees safe is of utmost importance. Your business also needs to comply with workplace safety requirements and procedures. Use this list of first aid kit contents to get started on your safety kit.
To learn more about workplace safety and what you can do to make your employees safer, check out our other resources on employee safety.