Quality America

First Aid

Q: How often should we take an inventory of our first aid supplies?

A: OSHA calls for regularly inspecting your kit. We recommend doing this as part of your monthly facility checklist; ensure completeness and remove any expired or expended material. OSHA says periodically consider the mix of items for possible updating. We recommend doing this as part of your annual OSHA program review, or anytime you start performing new procedures that could create additional hazards.

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Posted by Karen @ Quality America on October 26, 2006 | Comments (2)


What is required in a 1st Aid kit?

Posted by: sherrill friedman at October 26, 2006 02:42 PM

OSHA's General Industry standards address workplace first aid kits. In Appendix A to regulation 1910.151, OSHA refers us to American National Standard (ANSI) Z308.1-2003 "Minimum Requirements for Workplace First Aid Kits,'' for what a first aid kit should contain.

OSHA goes on to state the kit listed in the ANSI standard should be adequate for small worksites. However, employers should determine the need for additional types of first aid equipment and supplies and also additional quantities. Consider the specific hazards existing in your work environment and ensure the kit contains items necessary to handle emergencies likely to occur at your facility.

Make sure:
-The kit is stored in a readily accessible location.
-It's inspected regularly (we recommend doing this as part of your monthly facility checklist) to ensure completeness, and to remove any expired or expended material.
-To periodically (we recommend including this in your annual OSHA program review) consider the mix of items for possible updating, especially if performing new procedures that could create additional hazards.
-Tourniquets are used only as a last resort.
-Over-the-counter drug products are in single dose tamper evident packaging. OTC drugs should not include ingredients known to cause drowsiness.
-Your location has at least one individual on each shift trained (with current documentation) in first aid and CPR--particularly if there is no infirmary, clinic, or hospital within 15 minutes of the workplace.
-Directions for requesting emergency assistance are present (for situations where a medical provider is not available).

ANSI Z308.1-2003 Minimum Requirements for Work Place First Aid Kit

1 Absorbent Compress, 32 sq. in. with no side smaller than 4 in.
16 Adhesive Bandages, 1 x 3 in.
1 Adhesive Tape, 5 yds.
10 Antiseptic, 0.5 g (0.14 fl. oz.) application
6 Burn Treatment, 0.5 g (.014 fl. oz.) application
4 Medical Exam Gloves
4 Sterile Pad, 3 x 3 in.
1 Triangular Bandage, 40 x 40 x 56 in. - 1 each

Recommended Kit Contents (Not required but should be considered)

16 Analgesic/Pain Reliever (i.e. Tylenol, Aspirin)
6 Antibiotic Treatment 1/32 oz
4 Bandage Compress 2" x 36"
2 Bandage Compress 3" x 36"
1 Bandage Compress 4" x 36"
1 Breathing Barrier *
1 Burn Dressing 4" x 4"
1 Cold Pack
2 Eye Covering, 2.9 sq Inches per eye
1 Eye Wash 1 oz
1 Roller Bandage 4" x 6 yd
2 Roller Bandage 2" x 6 yd
1 Surgical Scissors
1 Emergency Blanket
1 Tweezers
2 Elastic Wraps
1 Splint

* Even though ANSI doesn't require it, we think every kit needs a single use, disposable CPR barrier.

One last thing, OSHA's 2006 Best Practices Guide "Fundamentals of a Workplace First-Aid Program" recommends an automated external defibrillator (AED) should be considered when selecting first-aid supplies and equipment.

Posted by: Sarah Alholm at October 26, 2006 02:47 PM

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  • About Dr. Dunn

Dr. Sheila Dunn is president and CEO of Quality America, Inc., a health care consulting firm located in Asheville, NC. She holds a doctoral degree in medical
laboratory education, and is a widely
respected lecturer and author of more than 200 articles on practice management and regulatory compliance issues for the primary care medical market.
(More about Dr. Dunn)

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