Open it up and see what’s inside. The contents can help save a life.
There’s probably one in the company lunchroom. Have you ever looked inside to see what’s there? The time to acquaint yourself with the contents of your office first aid kit is not when you’re faced with an emergency, hoping there’s something inside that will help.
Here’s a challenge for you. Stop and open it up the next time you walk by one of the first aid kits in your office. See if you can recognize all of the contents. Do you know how to use them? Here are some basics about these essential collections of life-savers.
The United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires all businesses to have first aid supplies readily available. The regulations even list what the administration has deemed to be adequate for worksites.
OSHA also requires companies to enhance their first aid kits by assessing the specific needs of the workplace and its workers. In addition to providing first aid supplies, employers have to make sure employees are protected from occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials.
The basics of an office first aid kit
Of course, the first step is to know where it’s located. First aid kits are not always white, and they don’t always have a red cross on the front. Many kits are green, and some are even orange. The color is meant to make it stand out so it can be found. The cross—no matter what its color—is a universal icon, so you’ll always see and recognize it.
OSHA has determined two basic kits, known as Class A and Class B, for most workplaces. The main difference is determined by the size of your company and the number of workers.
Class A kits are the most common, providing a basic range of products that deal with the most common types of workplace injuries. The contents help with the first aid treatment cuts and abrasions, minor burns, and eye injuries. Class B kits will contain a larger quantity of supplies, as well as a broader range of products that might be needed for your specific workplace.
Besides classes of first aid kits, there are also types. While the class deals mainly with the size and makeup of your workplace, the type mostly has to do with the kit’s location and what it could be exposed to. Types I and II, for example, are both for indoor use—but one is portable. The other types determine whether the kit is water-resistant versus waterproof, and its ruggedness for outdoor storage or use.
So, if the first aid kit you walk by regularly at the office is hanging on the wall, it’s likely a Type II—but depending on its size it could be either a Class A or Class B.
An even better approach
To truly understand the contents of a first aid kit – and how to use them – it’s a great idea for your company to bring in professional trainers. Certified first aid training done on-site makes learning this lifesaving knowledge convenient for everyone, and especially relevant to your specific environment.
You can upgrade your lifesaving skills at the same time by participating in on-site CPR, AED, First Aid, and Bloodborne Pathogens training. One Beat is the leading certification training center in Florida, with daily classes available at our Fort Lauderdale training facility as well as customized instruction at your workplace.
For more information about our American Heart Association-authorized training, connect with us online or at 954-321-5305.