The staff within a small business is often a closely bonded group – sometimes familial – however the same duty of care applies when it comes to the emotional and physical wellbeing of a workforce. Regardless of business size, employers are under the obligation of the Health & Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 and Approved Code of Practice and Guidance (ACOP L74) to make apposite First Aid provisions for all members of staff. First Aid training is one of the most practical ways in which to ensure the safety of a workforce is adequately supervised and maintained during working hours.
Identifying the needs of a workforce is the first step to determining what level of First Aid training is relevant.
In broad terms there are two divisions – Low Hazard (supermarkets, libraries, offices etc) and Higher Hazard (engineering, warehouse work, construction, chemical production, heavy machinery etc), each with their own guidelines.
The small business tends to employ less than 25 members of staff. In such cases one basic First Aid representative is required on site per 25 people. For 25-50 employees, a single First Aid representative with training in Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW) is necessary.
One First Aid representative per 5 employees is required. For between 5-50 employees at least one person trained in EFAW or First Aid at Work (FAW) is required.
Account should be taken of the common injuries that can occur in a small business workplace. Whilst this could simply mean paper cuts, the aim is to ensure adequate First Aid provisions are made in terms of training, protocol and onsite equipment.
Upon clear identification of the needs of a business, sourcing the most pertinent First Aid courses is crucial to the law-abiding, workplace friendly provision of First Aid tools and trained representatives. .