How many first aiders are needed in the workplace?

09/03/20

It is every employer’s responsibility to keep their employees safe – but the rules are different depending on the size and nature of the workplace. Ensure you are providing the best possible care for your staff as well as meeting legislation by following this guide.

What is the minimum requirement for provision?
According to the Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981, workplaces at the minimum should provide:

  • A suitably stocked first aid kit, within easy reach

  • An appointed person responsible for taking care of first aid needs (such as making sure the first aid kit is always fully stocked and at hand)

  • Accessible information about first-aid arrangements – for every employee to read


By law, this applies to all workplaces, including those with fewer than five employees.

Provisions for 25-50 employees
There are no rigid rules for your requirement for first aiders, according to the HSE – but a workplace health and safety assessment should give you a good indicator of what you need to provide. In low-risk workplaces, such as offices, which house between 25 to 50 people, the HSE recommends you have at least one first aider. Appointed first aiders in low-risk workplaces need to hold an Emergency First Aid at Work certificate. They require six hours of training, or a one-day course, to gain the certification.

Provisions for 100 employees plus
For every 100 employees in the workplace, another first aider is required. Make sure you also understand the requirements for first aid kits in larger working environments.

Rules for high-risk workplaces
High-risk workplaces require the same number of first aiders per headcount as low-risk, but those employees need extra training. People responsible for first aid in construction sites or factories require a certificate in “First Aid at Work.” This is a three-day course, which will cover needs for workers in high-risk environments as well as the needs for a variety of underlying health conditions (such as heart disease, asthma etc.)

For more information on how to protect your employees in the workplace, download our Ultimate Guide to First Aid in the Workplace.


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