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First Aid Code of Practice Qld: Essential Guide

Welcome to your ultimate guide on the first aid code of practice in Queensland! Whether you’re a business owner, an organisation, or an employee, understanding and complying with this code is crucial for ensuring workplace safety and the well-being of everyone involved. 

In this essential guide, we cover:

  1. Key features of the code
  2. Legal obligations for Brisbane businesses
  3. The importance of accessible first aid resources
  4. The necessity for staff trained in first aid
  5. Regular review and maintenance of first aid equipment
  6. Creating a safe workplace environment
  7. Compliance with national standards, and more.

The code is freely available on the WorkSafe website, so why not download it, save it in a place that’s easy to find for later reference, and follow along as we dive in!

Click here to view and download the First Aid Code of Practice

Table of Contents

What is WorkSafe Australia’s First Aid Code of Practice?

To ensure workplace safety, WorkSafe Australia has developed a comprehensive code of practice for first aid. This code, which is based on the Work Health and Safety Act, helps you get your first aid up to speed.

It sets out the minimum requirements for first aid and helps you make first aid decisions for your workplace.. It serves as a reference for employers, managers, and workers to understand and implement effective first aid procedures.

By following this code, organisations can create a safer work environment and ensure that first aid assistance is readily available when needed.

Key features of the First Aid Code of Practice Queensland

The First Aid Code of Practice helps employers to help their business provide the right first aid equipment and training.

It tells you how to figure out what you need in a first aid kit, how many kits you need and where to put them. It also gives advice on first aid training for your staff.

By providing practical guidance, this code helps employers understand their obligations and implement appropriate first aid measures in their workplaces.

Compliance with the code not only reduces safety risks but also ensures that employees have access to timely and effective first aid treatment when accidents or medical emergencies occur.

Legal obligations for Brisbane businesses and organisations

Brisbane businesses and organisations have a legal obligation to adhere to the First Aid code of practice. This code is part of the Work Health and Safety (WHS) Act.

While the guidance in the code is not mandatory, if your organisation complies with the code it will be deemed as having complied with the Work Health and Safety regulations. Failing to comply with the code can lead to legal consequences, including penalties, fines, and potential harm to employees.

It is essential for businesses to familiarise themselves with the code and ensure that they meet its requirements. By doing so, organisations demonstrate their commitment to the well-being of their workforce and create a safer work environment overall.

The importance of accessible first aid resources

In any workplace, having easily accessible first aid resources is of paramount importance. Properly equipped first aid kits, staff trained in first aid, and clear protocols can make all the difference in emergency situations.

When accidents happen, every second counts, and having immediate access to the necessary supplies and knowledgeable first aiders can significantly impact the outcome. Ensuring that first aid resources are readily available can save lives, prevent further injury, and promote a culture of safety in the workplace.

Recommended first aid resources for different work environments

First aid resources must be tailored to the specific work environment, taking into account the potential risks and hazards present.

Here are some recommended first aid resources based on industry standards:

  • First aid kits: Every workplace should have a well-stocked first aid kit that includes essential items such as bandages, dressings, adhesive tape, scissors, and gloves.
  • Emergency oxygen equipment: If you are in a location far away from an ambulance or where the time to emergency services could take a while, having someone trained to give oxygen and having it nearby can make a real difference.
  • Automated External Defibrillator (AED): The Code of Practice says: “You should consider providing an AED if there is a risk to workers at your workplace from electrocution, if there would be a delay in ambulance services arriving at the workplace, or where there are large numbers of members of the public.”
  • Burn treatment supplies: Workplaces where there is a risk of burns should have appropriate supplies, such as burn dressings, available for immediate treatment.

By providing these first aid resources, employers demonstrate their commitment to employee safety and preparedness for any medical emergencies that may arise.

Best practices for maintaining accessibility of first aid resources

Ensuring the accessibility of first aid resources involves more than just having them available. It requires ongoing maintenance, organisation, and training.

Here are some best practices to consider:

  • Regularly check and restock first aid kits: The guide states that as a minimum you will need to inspect kits every 12 months or when used, replace any used or expired supplies, and ensure all items are in good condition.
  • Keep first aid equipment visible and easily accessible: Place first aid kits, defibrillators, and other equipment in locations that are clearly marked and easily accessible in case of an emergency. You’ll also need to consider where incidents are most likely to occur.
  • Provide training on first aid equipment: Ensure that employees receive proper training on how to use first aid equipment effectively, including how to administer first aid treatment in various scenarios.
  • Maintain an organised first aid station: Keep first aid equipment well-organised and clearly labelled, making it easy for employees to locate supplies when needed.

By taking reasonable care to maintain first aid resources, employers can ensure that they remain accessible and effective in providing timely assistance during emergencies.

Necessity for staff trained in first aid

Having staff trained in first aid is crucial for maintaining a higher standard of work health and safety. Proper first aid training, like that provided by My First Aid Course, equips individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to respond effectively in cases of medical emergencies or accidents.

Trained personnel can provide immediate assistance, assess the severity of injuries or conditions, and effectively administer first aid treatment until professional medical assistance arrives.

By investing in first aid training, businesses demonstrate their commitment to the health and well-being of their employees, clients, and visitors.

Training requirements as per the First Aid Code of Practice Qld

The First Aid Code of Practice outlines specific training requirements for first aid personnel. Employers need to ensure that they follow approved codes of practice to meet these requirements.

Some key training considerations include:

  • Designating a first aid officer: Appointing at least one certified first aid officer who has completed a nationally recognised certification such as HLTAID011 Provide First Aid. Many industries may need to consider advanced first aid training.
  • Refreshing training: Regularly scheduling refresher training courses to ensure first aid officers keep their knowledge and skills up to date. A common refresher course is HLTAID009 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation

  • Consider Common Injuries: If a worker has a serious condition, or there is a high risk of a particular injury, the designated first aider should try to grow his knowledge of what to do.

By meeting these training requirements, organisations can ensure that they have competent first aid personnel ready to respond to emergencies effectively.

Benefits of having trained first aid personnel

Having trained first aid personnel in the workplace offers numerous benefits, including:

  • Effective risk management: Trained first aiders can promptly assess risks and take appropriate action, reducing the likelihood of accidents, injuries, or medical emergencies.
  • Immediate medical assistance: Trained personnel can provide immediate assistance, administer first aid treatment, and stabilise medical conditions until professional medical assistance arrives.
  • Increased safety awareness: First aid training enhances safety awareness among employees, fosters a culture of safety, and encourages proactive risk management throughout the organisation.
  • Enhanced emergency response: Trained first aiders are equipped to respond quickly and efficiently during emergency situations, minimizing the impact of injuries or medical incidents.
  • Improved workplace morale and confidence: Having trained first aiders instills confidence in employees, creating a sense of security, and promoting a positive work environment.

By investing in first aid training for staff, organisations improve overall workplace safety, reduce risks, and create an environment of care and support.


Benefits of having trained first aid personnel

How many staff do you need to designate as first aiders. The code recommends the following ratios:

• low risk workplaces—one first aider for every 50 workers
• high risk workplaces—one first aider for every 25 workers
• remote high-risk workplaces—one first aider for every 10 workers

Of course in certain industries this may need to be higher such as if staff work by themselves or if there are multiple shifts. Section 3.5 of the code has a 5 step plan to determine the right number for your staff.

Review and maintenance of first aid equipment

Regularly reviewing and maintaining first aid equipment is crucial to ensure its readiness and effectiveness when emergencies occur. 

The Work Health and Safety (WHS) regulation places responsibility on employers to manage safety risks, including those related to first aid equipment.

By adhering to the code of practice, employers can proactively address safety risks, reduce potential hazards, and ensure the availability of fully stocked and functional first aid equipment when it is needed most.

Guidelines for regular review of first aid equipment

Regularly reviewing first aid equipment involves following certain guidelines to ensure its reliability and effectiveness. Here are some important considerations:

  • Conduct safety consultation: Involve employees in the review process to gather insights and suggestions regarding first aid equipment requirements.
  • Assess risks: Identify any workplace hazards and risks and evaluate if additional first aid equipment or specific supplies are necessary. The code has a sample of a risk assessment you can use for this process.
  • Establish a review schedule: Determine a regular schedule, such as annual or biannual, to review first aid equipment, ensuring it remains up to date and in compliance with current regulations.
  • Keep records of equipment review: Document the dates of equipment reviews, any changes made, and the outcomes, to maintain a record of compliance and demonstrate due diligence. Also keep records of when your first aid kits have been serviced and examined.

By following these guidelines, organisations can effectively manage their first aid equipment, identify any gaps or deficiencies, and ensure that employees have access to the necessary resources in case of emergencies.

Maintenance tips for first aid.

Proper maintenance of first aid equipment is essential to preserve its functionality and reliability.

Here are some maintenance tips for different types of first aid equipment:

  • Check the use-by-dates: Most first aid equipment is sanitary and designed to be used just once. That’s why it’s important to check they haven’t expired. Otherwise, decade old bandages could disintegrate when you go to use them.
  • Learn to service the AED: Most AED’s have indicator lights that show if they are ready to be used. Regular checks of this indicator and following through with maintenance ensures they are ready for use.
  • Educate employees on equipment maintenance: Train employees on how to maintain first aid equipment, such as regularly checking for damage, reporting any issues, and proper storage of supplies.

By following these maintenance tips, organisations can ensure that their first aid equipment remains in good condition, ready for use, and capable of providing effective assistance during emergencies.

How to create a safe workplace environment

Creating a safe workplace environment is not only a legal obligation but also a moral responsibility. 

Worksafe Queensland, in harmony with safety legislation, outlines specific safety duties that employers need to fulfill. By implementing effective safety measures, organizations can protect the health and well-being of their employees, reduce workplace accidents, and foster a positive work culture focused on safety.

Measures to ensure staff preparedness for emergencies

While we are on the topic of WHS, here are some other general tips to consider:

  • Conduct regular emergency drills: Regularly practice emergency response procedures through simulated drills, enabling employees to become familiar with protocols and enhancing their ability to act promptly during crises.
  • Familiarise staff with emergency exits: Ensure that all employees are aware of emergency exits, evacuation plans, and assembly points, so they can quickly and safely evacuate if the need arises.
  • Display emergency contact information prominently: Clearly display emergency contact numbers, including those for first aid assistance, medical services, and workplace safety authorities, enabling quick access to essential resources during emergencies.
  • Provide training on administering first aid in emergencies: Offer workplace-specific first aid training to employees, ensuring they have the necessary skills to provide immediate assistance until professional medical help arrives.

By implementing these measures, organisations promote workplace health and safety, empowering staff to handle emergencies confidently and effectively.

How compliant is your organisation with the First Aid Code of Practice Qld?

Assessing and maintaining compliance with the First Aid Code of Practice is crucial for organisations. Is your organisation fully compliant? We’ve put a questionnaire together to help you evaluate your compliance level:

Consider the following questions to evaluate your compliance level:

  1. Are first aid resources easily accessible and properly stocked in your workplace?
  2. Do you have designated first aid officers who have received the necessary training and certification?
  3. Are first aid kits regularly reviewed, maintained, and updated as per industry requirements?
  4. Do you have documented records of first aid equipment checks, reviews, and training programs?
  5. Have you conducted a comprehensive risk assessment and implemented first aid measures accordingly?

By evaluating your organisation’s compliance, you can identify areas for improvement and ensure that you align with the requirements of the First Aid Code of Practice and relevant workplace safety regulations.

Conclusion

In conclusion, prioritising workplace safety through adherence to the First Aid Code of Practice is crucial. By ensuring accessible first aid resources, staff training, and regular equipment maintenance, organisations in Brisbane can create a secure environment for employees.

Implementing safety measures not only meets legal obligations but also fosters a culture of preparedness and care. Remember, compliance with national standards is paramount in promoting a safe workplace.

So, let’s work together to uphold these practices, ensuring the well-being of everyone in the workplace. Stay safe, stay informed, and be prepared for any emergency that comes your way!