the workplace it is often the job of a Certified First Aid
Responder is a trade name for a 40-hour certification course in advanced first
aid and CPR. Hospitals, technical colleges or fire departments teach this
course, and certification must be updated biannually. Basic First Aid and CPR
courses are approximately eight hours long, and are certified through a number
of nationally recognized organizations such as The American Red Cross, The
American Heart Association and The National Safety Council. These certifications
also should be updated biannually.
trained citizens are indispensable in helping people in emergencies. To help
citizens be more prepared for emergency situations, the American Red Cross
trains people in first aid and CPR. Due to the increased need for first aid
services, the development of the EMS (Emergency Medical Services) has been
established in most communities. It remains, however, equally important that
citizens are trained in first aid and know what to do until the EMS or other
emergency medical professional arrives.
Aid and Infectious Diseases
diseases are diseases that pass from one person to another. Most commonly these
are referred to as bloodborne or airborne pathogens. In first aid, blood-borne
and airborne pathogens are most commonly transmitted through touching, breathing
and biting. People can become infected if touched by an infected person or if
the germs in that person's blood or other bodily fluids pass into the body
through breaks in the skin, or through the lining of the mouth, nose or eyes.
Therefore, the greatest risk is in touching an-other person's blood or bodily
fluids directly (without protective gloves or some other protective barrier).
Below are some basic guidelines to follow that will help reduce body fluid
transmission when rendering first aid care.
direct contact with bodily fluids and blood whenever possible.
barriers such as gloves or a clean dry cloth, between the victim's bodily
fluids and yourself.
protective clothing such as disposable gloves, to cover any cuts, scrapes or
skin conditions you have.
your hands with soap and water immediately after giving care.
not eat, drink or touch your mouth, nose or eyes when giving first aid.
not touch objects that may be soiled with blood or other bodily fluids.
prepared by having a first aid kit stocked and easily accessible.
following these simple guidelines, you can reduce the risk of getting or
transmitting infectious diseases.
states have enacted Good Samaritan Laws to en-courage people to help others in
emergency situations. These laws give legal protection to people who provide
emergency care to ill or injured persons. They require that the "Good
Samaritan" use common sense and a reasonable level of skill not to exceed
the scope of the individual's training in emergency situations.
you're interested in learning more about the Good Samaritan laws in Oklahoma,
contact a local legal professional or check your local library.
First Aid Procedures
are some basic first aid techniques for treating shock, bleeding and wounds,
burns, choking, electric shock, eye injury, fainting, heat stroke, hypothermia,
and unconscious-ness. These techniques can be used in the workplace or at home
and being prepared will help make the most of a serious situation.
can be life threatening. Symptoms include cold sweat, weakness, irregular
breathing, chills, pale or bluish lips and fingernails, rapid weak pulse, and
nausea. Call 911 or seek medical
Not give the victim anything to eat or drink.
the victim on their back, but do not move them if they have back or neck
the victim is unconscious, vomiting or has severe injury to the lower face
or jaw, lay them on their side and be sure they are getting adequate air.
the victim warm (not hot) by use of blankets or clothes.
Raise the victim's feet and legs with a pillow. (Only do this if it
does not cause the victim any pain.)
a clean cloth or gauze and gloved hand over the wound and apply firm steady
pressure for at least 5 minutes. Call
911 or other emergency personnel if bleeding is severe.
an injured arm or leg above the level of the victim's heart if practical.
bleeding stops, secure the cloth with a bandage. Do Not lift the cloth from
the wound to check if bleeding has stopped.
Be sure the bandage is not too tight--it may cut off circulation.
the victim for shock. Never use a tourniquet unless you cannot control the
bleeding. Tourniquets may
result in subsequent medical amputation.
a hose, shower or faucet for at least 15 minutes to rinse away all traces of
chemicals while removing any contaminated clothing from the victim.
the burn loosely with a clean, dry cloth.
the victim for shock. Call 911 or seek medical attention as soon as
water to stop actual burning of skin if necessary. If the skin is not
broken, immerse the burned area in cool (not ice) water, or gently apply a
cool com-press until pain is relieved. Bandage with a clean dry cloth.
not break a blister if one forms. Do not apply ointments or creams.
skin is broken, or if burns are severe call 911 or other emergency
not clean the wound or remove embedded clothing. Cover the burn loosely with
a clean, dry cloth. Anticipate shock and treat accordingly.
These instructions are for choking victims over one year of age. There are
specific guide-lines for treatment of infants choking that are not outlined in
the victim can speak or cough forcibly and is getting sufficient air, do not
interfere with their attempts to cough the obstruction from their throat. If
the victim cannot speak or is not get-ting sufficient air, have someone call
911 while you perform abdominal thrusts.
directly behind the victim and wrap your arms around their stomach. Make a
fist with one hand and place that fist just above the navel and well below
the ribs, with the thumb and forefinger side toward you.
this fist with the other hand and pull it quickly toward you with an inward
and slightly upward thrust. Repeat if necessary.
the victim becomes unconscious:
the victim on their back.
the object is visible, use your forefinger to reach deeply into the victim's
mouth (along the inside of the cheek) and try to sweep the obstruction out
of the victim's throat. (This step should be performed only on someone 9
years of age or older.)
if this is not successful, attempt rescue breathing. If rescue breathing is
not working due to the obstruction, sit straddling the victim's thighs and
per-form abdominal thrusts by pushing onto the victim above the navel below
the ribs with the heel of the hand five times from this position.
Not touch the victim until electrical contact is broken. Unplug or switch
off the source of electricity if possible.
victim is not breathing and has no pulse, call 911 or seek medical attention
the eyelids apart and flush the eyeball with luke-warm water for at least
15-30 minutes. Be careful not to let runoff water flow into the other eye.
a gauze pad or cloth over both eyes and secure it with a bandage.
to an eye specialist or emergency room immediately.
a gauze pad or cloth over both eyes and secure it with a bandage.
not try to remove an embedded object. Get to an eye specialist or emergency
Fainting victims regain consciousness almost immediately. If this does not
happen, the victim could be in serious danger and you should call 911 as soon as
the victim down on their back and make sure they have plenty of fresh air.
the victim and apply a cold compress to their face.
the victim vomits, roll them on their side and keep their windpipe clear.
the fainting incident to the victim's doctor.
stroke can be life threatening. Symptoms can include a body temperature of 105įF
or higher; dry, hot, flushed skin; rapid pulse, unconsciousness, and lack of
the victim out of the heat and into a cooler place.
the victim in the shock position, lying on their back, with their feet up.
or loosen the victim's clothing.
the victim by fanning and applying cloth-wrapped cold packs or wet towels.
(Prolonged exposure to the cold)
can also be life threatening. Symptoms include lower than normal body
temperature, shivering, apathy, disorientation, drowsiness, and eventually
move the victim into the best available nearby shelter.
the victim out of wet clothes and replace with dry clothes, sleeping bag or
the victim drink a warm, non-alcoholic beverage if possible.
responsiveness by gently tapping the victim's shoulder and asking; "Are you
O.K.?" If there is no
response, look for a medical alert tag on the victimís neck or wrist and
immediately seek assistance.
the victim is not breathing and has no pulse, begin CPR.
911 or seek medical aid as soon as possible.
How can I best prepare my workplace for an emergency?
Always have a stocked first aid kit and emergency equipment handy.
Establish an emergency responder program in the workplace.
Always consider safety first. By adopting a safety program, you can keep work-related accidents to a minimum.
Can I be sued for providing first aid care in an emergency?
People rarely sue someone for helping in an emergency, but it does happen on
occasion. However, if you act as a reasonable and prudent person would under
these conditions, Good Samaritan immunity will generally protect you.
When should I call for assistance?
If the victim is unconscious, call 911 or your local emergency number. If the
victim is conscious, call an ambulance unless they ask that an ambulance not be
called; call 911 or an ambulance anyway IF the victim:
or becomes unconscious.
trouble breathing or is breathing in a strange way.
chest pain or pressure.
pressure or pain in the abdomen that does not go away.
vomiting or passing blood.
seizures, a severe headache or slurred speech.
to have been poisoned.
an injury to the head, back or neck.
Has possible broken bones.