How Many First Aiders Does My Workplace Need?
Depending on the size or specific hazards (or both) of the place of work, employers have a duty to provide trained occupational first aiders. It is vital that employees are aware of what to do in the event of an emergency, and by having up to date training records, you are ensuring your organisation is compliant with legislation.
The HSA have some documents to guide organisations online:
A Risk Assessment in the context of the Safety Statement should consider the numbers employed, the nature of the work, the degree of hazard, the level of accidents arising, the size and location of the workplace, the distribution of the employees, shift working, availability of an occupational health service with the workplace and the distance and duration from external medical services etc.
If the designated occupational first aider is absent from the place of work, what must the employer do?
If the occupational first aider is absent in temporary or exceptional circumstances, the employer may designate a person, to take charge of an injured or ill person until medical assistance is obtained. Such person’s functions, if they have not received training in basic life saving skills, would, primarily be to seek appropriate assistance as soon as possible and to ensure that nothing further is allowed to occur which would exacerbate the problems of the injured person.
Foreseeable absences such as planned annual leave are not considered “temporary or exceptional circumstances” In these situations the employer must ensure that there is an adequate number of trained occupational first aiders to cover the foreseeable absences or leave, if the need for an occupational first aider in the workplace has been identified.
What changeD on 1st June 2018?
As and from 1st June 2018, the HSA will only recognise PHECC First Aid Response (FAR) as meeting the needs of Occupational First Aid in workplaces. This means that learners who undergo training from 1st June 2018 must complete a First Aid Response (FAR) full or refresher course.
The HSA recognises both the QQI level 5 Occupational First Aid (OFA) and PHECC First Aid Response (FAR) learner standards up to 31st May 2018. Any learner who completes aQQI level 5 Occupational First Aid (OFA) course full or Occupational First Aid Refresher course up to 31st May 2018 will be recognised by the Health & Safety Authority (HSA) as an occupational first aider for the full 2 year duration of their certificate. From 1st June 2018, learners should only complete a First Aid Response (FAR) full or First Aid Response Refresher course in order to be recognised by the Health & Safety Authority (HSA) as an occupational first aider.
Presently, the Health & Safety Authority (HSA) recognises both the 3-day QQI Level 5 Occupational First Aid certificate (OFA) and the 3-day PHECC First Aid Response certificate (FAR). Up to 10 participants can attend the Occupational First Aid certificate (OFA) course, with a maximum of 8 being able to attend the First Aid Response certificate (FAR) course. From the 31st May 2018 only the First Aid Response certificate (FAR) certificate will be recognised. However, certification for Occupational First Aid (OFA) courses delivered before the 31st May 2018 will be recognised for 2 years.
The first aid refresher course is significantly changed. The Occupational First Aid certificate (OFA) 1-day refresher course allowed a maximum of 10 participants. The First Aid Response certificate (FAR) Refresher course is delivered over 2-days and up to 8 participants can attend.
- We require a copy of the participant’s previous First Aid Response or First Aid Response Refresher certificate. (1 document)
- Both days of the First Aid Response Refresher course must fall before the current cert expires.
- In exceptional circumstances, at the discretion of the training centre and accreditation provider, a 30-day grace can be requested.
- For onsite courses we can honor the 90-day grace period, but please advise us of when the participants certs went out of date (at time of booking) so we can ensure we have assigned a trainer who recognises grace period required.
- For public courses, the grace period can vary from 30 or 90-days, we have updated our schedule below to indicate the grace period being recognised with the partner training provider for each course.
- We require a copy of the participant’s previous Occupational First Aid or Occupational First Aid Refresher certificates.
- We require both the “House Certificate” which states the actual dates the course was attended and when the certification expires.
- And we require the “Accredited Certificate” (Which only states the date which the accreditation provider processed the certificate).
- Both certifications are needed in order to verify the participant is eligible to attend the First Aid Response Refresher course. (2 documents)
- Both days of the First Aid Response Refresher course must fall before the grace period ends.
It is important to note that participants who have expired certs and are within their grace period are NOT counted as first aiders towards your organisations occupational first aider requirement. After the 31st May 2018 participants will need to complete their refresher before their current cert expires.
Countdown to Changes To First Aid