First Aid Kits

As a first aider you will be required to use certain items in your treatment of a casualty. Most of these items will be contained within a First Aid Kit.  All First Aid Kits should be in a sealed container that is clearly identified and located in a cool and dry location, readily accessible at all times. The contents of your First Aid Kit will vary depending on your occupation, personal needs, location (such as remote locations) and your specific location within Australia.

Each State and Territory body has different codes of practice and guidelines relating to their minimum requirements with First Aid Kits in the workplace.   Further information can be found with these relevant bodies in each State/Territory such as SafeWork Australia.

The first aid kit should provide basic equipment for administering first aid for injuries including:

  • Cuts, scratches, punctures, grazes and splinters
  • Muscular sprains and strains
  • Minor burns
  • Amputations and/or major bleeding wounds
  • Broken bones
  • Eye injuries
  • Shock

The contents of first aid kits should be based on a risk assessment. For example, there may be a higher risk of eye injuries and a need for more eye pads.

NOTE: The contents of First Aid Kits should be checked regularly to ensure contents are present, in date and clean.

Design of kits

First Aid kits can be any size, shape or type to suit your workplace, but each kit should:

  • Be large enough to contain the necessary items.
  • Be immediately identifiable with a white cross on a green background prominently displayed on the outside.
  • Contain a list of the contents for that kit, and
  • Be made of material that will protect the contents from dust, moisture, and contamination.

Size & Location

First aid equipment and facilities should be located at convenient points and in areas where there is a higher risk of injury or illness occurring.

A large workplace may require first aid to be available in more than one location if:

  • Work is being carried out a long distance from emergency services
  • Workers are dispersed over a wide area
  • Access to a park of the workplace is difficult, or
  • The workplace has more than one floor level.

The distance of the workplace from local emergency services should be considered when determining first aid requirements.  Extra first aid considerations may be necessary for those who work in remote or isolated areas.

A portable first aid kit should be provided in the vehicles of mobile workers if that is there workplace, for example couriers, taxi drivers, sales representatives etc. These kits should be safely located so as not to become projectile in a collision.