While evaluating first aid requirements, one of the most common questions people usually ask is how many first aiders are legally required in the workplace.
First Aid at work is not only a legal requirement but is an extremely important part of your health and safety procedure. In this article, we assess how many first aiders are required in the workplace and help you comply with first aid guidance.
As per The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981, every business/organization must provide adequate and appropriate first aid coverage including equipment, facilities, and the number of qualified first aiders in the workplace. One of the main considerations when looking at the number of trained first aiders will depend upon the risks present in your workplace.
If you are working in environments that are considered ‘Low-risk’, then first aid requirements will be lower. Whereas, in a high-risk environment, the chances of accidents/injury are high, so it makes sense that you should have more first aiders.
Therefore, to ensure you do have the required number of first aiders in your organization, you should carry out a risk assessment.
Carrying out a first aid risk assessment is a simple process. The purpose of a risk assessment is to prove to the relevant authorities that you have been ‘fairly practicable’ in keeping your workplace safe. It is recommended to keep a record of your assessment and show your findings if any local authority or the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) needs to see it.
Following are the things that you should keep in mind when completing the risk assessment:
When conducting your risk assessment, consider the realities of day-to-day work like staff holidays, shift patterns, part-time workers, and off-site working. That is why the HSE recommends the number of first aiders as per employee strength.
For every, one hundred employees one first aider is required regardless of holidays, therefore in reality you will need at least two first aiders to provide continuity of cover.
As stated by HSE, High-risk workplaces, such as construction sites or maintenance work, need first aiders who have taken a first aid course that meets the principles of assessment. The assessment should include a practical valuation, and, at the end of the training, workers should gain a certificate in Emergency First Aid at Work or First Aid at Work.
After carrying out a risk assessment, you are now able to understand how many first aiders are required in your workplace. As was explained earlier, there is no hard and fast answer to the number of first aiders that you need at work in terms of the law.
The HSE recommends that if your workplace has less than 25 employees, there should be at least one person trained in first aid. After that, another first-aider should be in place for every 50 workers.
Even in low-risk workplaces with 25-50 people, there should be at least one first aider who is certified with Emergency First Aid at Work, with another first-aider per 100 employees. An Emergency First Aid at Work course is suitable for Low-risk workplaces.
For more than 50 employees, the first aider for every 100 employees should be in place. So, if you have 101 employees, you require at least 2 first aiders. These first aiders must be qualified for 3-day First Aid at Work level Course and be allocated to different areas of the business to ensure adequate coverage and prevent overlap.
Accidents can happen both at high and low-risk workplaces, so an appointed person is required. This is recommended for high-risk workplaces with less than 5 employees or low-risk workplaces with less than 25 employees. An appointed person is responsible for maintaining the first aid equipment and calling for an ambulance if required. There is no need to have first aid training for appointed persons. If you think you don’t require a qualified first aider, it is still important you have that appointed person in the workplace in case an emergency occurs.
At, Bright Learning Centre, we offer a range of First Aid training courses in Leicester. For further details on this course and information on forthcoming training courses, simply click on the links below:
Level 3 Emergency First Aid at Work
Level 3 Award in First Aid at Work
First Aid at Work Requalification Course
Level 3 Award in Pediatric Emergency First Aid at Work