Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981

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Health & Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981:

Employers Responsibility

The Health & Safety Law stipulated that an employer has a responsibility to ensure that first aid provision in the workplace is sufficient according to their risk assessment carried out.


This includes:

  • Completing a First Aid Risk Assessment to decide on where and how many First Aiders are needed.
  • Employers provide the training and refreshers training for those First Aiders.
  • Employers provide sufficient first aid kits and equipment.


Guidance and advice on the above can be sort form the following:


Risk Assessments

All employers must complete a first aid risk assessment which should include the following:


  • The nature of the work and workplace hazards and risks.
  • The size of the organisation.
  • The nature of the workforce.
  • The organisation history of accidents and lone workers.
  • The needs of travelling, remote and lone workers.
  • The work patterns shift patterns (rotas).
  • The distribution of the workforce.
  • The remoteness of the workplace from emergency medical services.
  • The employees working on shared or multi-occupied sites.
  • The annual leave along with other absences.
  • The first aid provision for non-employees.


Risk Assessment Tool:


First Aiders

There are a number of factors that need to be taken into consideration when advertising for staff to take on the role of company First Aider. Ideally the person who volunteers is best.


What skills should they have?

  • Attitude
  • Good communication skills
  • Commitment
  • Motivation
  • Reliable
  • God decision make
  • Able to learn new skills and develop knowledge
  • Able to absorb stress


First Aiders Information:



The Health & Safety Executive have introduced two new courses for the company first aiders.

  • HSE First Aid at Work (3 day course).
  • HSE EFAW Emergency First Aid at Work (one day course).


Annual refresher training

In October 2009 the HSE recommend that First Aiders attend annual refresher training. This is due to the strong evidence of ‘first aid skill fade’.


Reporting of Accidents

Accidents at work must be recorded in the accident book no matter what nature or severity. The incident may need to be reported directly to the Health & Safety Executive under RIDDOR 1995 regulations. It is the responsibility of the employer to report the following occurrences directly to the Health & Safety Executive:

  • Accidents resulting in 3 or more days off work (within 10 days).
  • Deaths (to be reported immediately).
  • Dangerous occurrences (to be reported immediately).
  • Diseases (report ASAP).
  • Major injuries (to be reported immediately).


Further Information:


Accident Book

Any accident at work, irrespective how small, MUST be recorded in the accident book. This book may be completed by any person on behalf of the patient. The information recorded can be useful in identifying accident trends and an area of concern that may need to be addressed and be reassessed i.e. risk assessment, not forgetting any insurance investigation.


  • Remember the Accident Book is a legal document.
  • Written evidence at the time is stronger evidence that you can recall from memory.
  • All sections should be completed and use black pen if possible (not pencil).
  • Remember the Data Protection Act; all personal details MUST be kept confidential and stored securely.
  • Nominate a person to be responsible for the safe keeping of these records. (I.E kept in a lockable cabinet).


Information required:

  • Name, address and occupation of the person involved in the accident.
  • Name, address, occupation and signature of the person completing the information.
  • Date, time and location of incident.
  • A description of how the accident occurred , giving the cause if possible.
  • Details of any injury sustained by the patient.


We hope you find this article useful. This is one in an alphabetical series of articles addressing various symptoms and their first aid treatments. If you would like more information on related resuscitation and first aid training, please get in touch.
You might also be interested in our blog. One of our more popular articles is about quality or quantity when it comes to first aid training.

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Read 20001 times Last modified on Wednesday, 29 January 2014
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