Revised ISEA Standard Establishes Two Classes of First Aid Kits

"The multi-tiered approach of designating kits allows employers to make practical choices based on the nature of the work area, recognizing that each workplace differs in potential risk and task load," said David Lapp, chairman of ISEA's First Aid Group and senior product manager at Honeywell Safety Products.

A newly revised consensus standard establishes two classes, A and B, for workplace first aid kits. The International Safety Equipment Association announced Jan. 16 that it had received American National Standards Institute approval for ANSI/ISEA Z308.1-2014, American National Standard-Minimum Requirements for Workplace First Aid Kits and Supplies.

This edition of the standard was prepared by members of ISEA's First Aid Group and leading industry stakeholders, and it was approved by a consensus review panel of health and safety experts, unions, construction industry and other user groups, test labs, and government agencies, according to the ISEA announcement.

It says the new classes of first aid kits are based on the assortment and quantity of first aid supplies in them, with Class A kits being designed to deal with most common workplace injuries, such as minor cuts, abrasions and, sprains, while Class B kits will include a broader range and quantity of supplies to deal with injuries in more complex or high-risk environments. First aid kits also are designated Type I, II, III, or IV depending on the work environment in which they are to be used: Type 1 identifies kits used indoors and permanently mounted to a wall or other structure; Type IV kits are suitable for outdoor use and must pass tests for corrosion, moisture, and impact resistance.

"The multi-tiered approach of designating kits allows employers to make practical choices based on the nature of the work area, recognizing that each workplace differs in potential risk and task load," said David Lapp, chairman of First Aid Group and senior product manager at Honeywell Safety Products. "By expanding the items in a basic first aid kit, employees will have greater access to items needed to treat their injuries as quickly as possible."

A key point is that many first aid supplies "previously identified as being recommendations in the 2009 standard are now required for both newly-designated kit types," according to ISEA. Scissors are to be included in both classes of kits, and a splint and a tourniquet are both required for a Class B first aid kit. "In deciding how best to meet the needs of workers, we looked at the increasing rates of workplace incidents where first aid treatment was administered and we considered the current practices in treating such injuries," Lapp said.

The standard can be purchased from ISEA for $30 per copy; discounts are available on bulk orders. For additional information, contact Cristine Z. Fargo, ISEA director of member and technical services, at cfargo@safetyequipment.org or visit www.safetyequipment.org.

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