What the Law Says about Provision of AED
According to the law, each employer is required to provide appropriate and adequate facilities, equipment, and personnel necessary for first aid care. This is to ensure that employees receive immediate and proper medication whenever they unfortunately get injured or get ill while at work. The Health and Safety Regulations of 1981 indicates that the said law is applicable for all types of workplaces even for those with less than 5 employees. It was then updated in 2013 by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to give more flexible options on the selection of the provider of first aid training. In this way, employers could better provide what is needed in the specific nature of their workplace.
One of the basic emergency medical devices that each employer must provide is the automated external defibrillator (AED). This is primarily used to regenerate the malfunctioning heart of a patient, whether he suffers from certain heart disease, drowning, electric shock, suffocation, or drug overdose. It includes defibrillator pads that are pressed into the patient’s chest in order to deliver the necessary electric shock for recovering the patient’s heart. There are also visual and sometimes, audio prompters that indicate what the user should do with the device according to the analysis made by the device on the heart rhythm of the patient. Apart from that, modern AEDs have advanced automation features for more convenience to the user and for more accurate and safer results.
The Health and Safety Regulations require employers to have an AED accessible to all people, including visitors, within the work premises. This should be mounted with a protective casing that is red-colored to make it noticeable enough for everyone. However, it should be secured enough and must be easily accessed by children or animals to avoid misuse of the device and other unwanted results. The AED should also be labeled with important instructions and warnings in order to maximize the chances that a lay responder would be able to use it effectively when an emergency calls.
It is also necessary for the employer to have their employers knowledgeable enough at least on the basic first aid practices, including the cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) that requires proper use of the AED to increase its success rate. User manuals of the device should be accessible for everyone, except in some special cases. As much as possible, the AED to provide is automatic and easy-to-use to avoid inconvenience or delay of application. This is derived from the fact that every second counts when a patient’s heart ceases to function; a matter of minutes of delay in the first aid care could be fatal. Because this is an electronic medical device, adequate safety measures for the user should be provided as well.
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