Module 1: Responsibilities of the First Aider

Responsibilities of the first aider

The role of the first aider

The main aims of first aid:

  • Preserve life

Administer immediate effective first aid to a casualty in order to save life

  • Prevent the condition from worsening

Recognising and treating the cause will assist with preventing the condition from worsening

  • Promote recovery

Administer ongoing treatment and offer constant support until the arrival of qualified medical assistance.

Legislative requirements

First aid within the workplace is governed by legislative requirements.

The Health and safety (First-aid) Regulations 1981

The Health and safety (First -aid) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1982

Requires employers to provide adequate and appropriate equipment, facilities and personnel to ensure their employees receive immediate attention if they are injured or taken ill at work. These regulations apply to all work places including those with less than five employees and to the self-employed.

The Health and safety at work etc. Act 1974

Employers have a responsibility for the health and safety of their employees. They are also responsible for any visitors to the premises such as customers, suppliers and the general public. For more info on the HSAW Act click HERE

RIDDOR Reporting of injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences regulations (current regulations)

RIDDOR places duties on employers, the self-employed and people in control of work premises (the responsible person) to report serious workplace accidents, occupational diseases and specified dangerous occurrences (near misses) in line with the 1995 regulations. For more info on RIDDOR click HERE

The management of Health and Safety at work regulations 1999

The main requirement on employers is to carry out a concise risk assessment of the workplace. Employers with five or more employees need to record the significant findings of the risk assessment. The risk assessment will assist employers in determine the first aid provision and the requirements within the workplace. For more info click HERE


Before commencing treatment of a casualty the first aider should ask for and receive the casualty’s consent to treatment. If the casualties are unable to give their consent due to their injuries or because they are unresponsive you can assume their consent to treatment.

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