Posts tagged: Workplace Safety Training

How to choose a first aid training provider

Most American businesses and organizations provide some level of first aid or safety training for their staff and employees. It is imperative that management select a firm to provide consultation, training, and follow up support that is the best fit for their needs. However, choosing a first aid training provider is not an easy task especially when you consider the lack of consistency in the health and safety training industry. Additionally, if you have a large organization there are geographical challenges such as having multiple locations diversely peppered across the country. Countless hours are lost locating qualified vendors, negotiating the investment and terms of the agreement, and selecting the appropriate vendor based on a firm’s corporate first aid training goals. To make matters worse, these efforts are further exacerbated when large offices require their human resources departments to properly vet each vendor for each office.

Here are 3 essential factors to consider when deciding who to hire to provide your next first aid training session.

  1. Know what your first aid training session will include and what, if any, customized programs must be addressed. The vendor must be able to scale based on your organization’s demands, give recommendations regarding industry best practices, and provide much more than basic first aid training. Consider, as you grow, will the vendor be able to help with evacuation training, CPR training, or other customized health and safety programs? If not, they might not be the right vendor for you.
  2. Require instruction from medical professionals with years of field experience. The people teaching your office life-saving skills must have extensive experience responding to emergencies. Only professionals who respond daily, who have performed the skills they are teaching, and who have a passion for their craft, will be able to address the critical emotional aspects involved during emergencies. Lay rescuers don’t turn into inactive bystanders because they can’t remember what to do. They freeze, allowing people to die, because they’re scared.
  3. The firm selected must be able to provide customized training at all of your facilities – nationally. One vendor, one negotiation, one contract, and one point of contact will save time, money, and allow your organization to contract and expand seamlessly as your organization’s needs change. Rather than asking satellite offices to adhere to corporate policies, then setting them free to find their own vendors and to learn a new field, the corporate office should set the standard and ensure the solution has been appropriately implemented.

If you’re not sure who’ll be showing up to teach your next First Aid training session, its likely that you also aren’t benefiting from economies of scale, financial savings, and the experiences of medical professionals who know the specific needs of your organization. By sticking to these three criteria, you’ll be the hero of the office. Not only because you’ll learn to implement the skills you’ve been taught, but because you’ve saved your firm time and money.

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Workplace safety training in today’s economy

Imagine a co-worker collapses, an ambulance pulls up to your organization, and paramedics begin taking life-saving measures next to computers, telephones, and cubical walls. What had been until now a normal day, suddenly transforms into anything but normal. It is natural for anyone who witnesses this incident to experience a range of emotions – shock, distress, anxiety, concern. With Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) killing 1000 people every day in the US – more than breast cancer, HIV/AIDS, gun shot wounds, and car accidents COMBINED – it is certain that many of these deaths occur daily in the workplace.

With cost overruns, delayed sales close dates, reduced sales packages, and general market instability, business managers are forced, like never before, to plan for the unexpected. Significant injury and illness in the workplace affects all aspects of an organization and strikes even the large firms which are typically perceived to be resilient to one-person injuries due to their size. There is also the belief that such organizations are compartmentalized with employees forming personal relationships only with those in their department and sitting adjacent to them, which is a misconception.

The outcome of the incident described before, is directly correlated to the time and severity of the recovery process for everyone involved with it. A state of shock is long-lasting and powerful. Most organizations understand that while it is important to address an incident by being sensitive to their employees and allowing them adequate time during the grieving process, it is also important to transition the firm to normal business operations as quickly as possible – especially when precious resources are scarce and employees are nervous about their employment, as during poor economic conditions.

We all wish to be the anomaly of Sudden Cardiac Arrest’s reach and avoid it entirely however it is virtually impossible to do so given its effect on victims of all ages, races, and sexes. SCA strikes everyone and everywhere. Defibrillation within 3-5 minutes can result in greater than a 70% chance of survival, however, across the country today’s average save rates are less than 5%. Studies indicate the important role the public plays in mitigating the severity of cardiac arrest by providing early and proper CPR and early defibrillation.

Employees of organizations across the country are looking at the statistics and beginning to ask their employers ‘why aren’t we installing AED units and increasing the chance of survival at our office from 5% to over 70%?’ The business case for deployment becomes much more compelling when decision-makers analyze costs associated with decreased productivity, absent employees, presenteeism (when employees are in the office but unfocussed), and similar costs which commonly aren’t analyzed.

In a tough economy, organizations are forced to look at their bottom lines like never before. One way to save financial resources is to analyze the investment of only a few thousand dollars for effective, safe, and efficient AED programs versus the potential financial impact of lost productivity, higher absenteeism, and decreased morale after a death at the workplace. Such economic analysis doesn’t include the most important comparative measure of all, the “cost” associated with lost life. Automated External Defibrillator (AED) units are simply the right thing for employer’s to provide, in good times and bad.

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