How to handle these 3 workplace injuries

It’s no secret that equipping yourself with basic first aid and CPR skills can save a life, but when it comes to workplace injuries it’s important to know how to respond to some of the more obscure and dangerous situations. With an estimated 63 people killed on the job in the first five months of 2016 alone, knowing how to respond in a workplace situation is vital in keeping your staff and colleagues safe. Whether it’s a construction site, a laboratory, a factory or a kitchen, each workplace has its own risks, and with it their own essential first aid steps. So, what are the some common workplace injuries, and how do you treat them?

1.       Chemical burns and contact

From standard industrial cleaning products to toxic laboratory substances, chemical burn and contact injuries are a common workplace hazard and occur across a variety of environments.

–          Immediately check the instructions on the chemical bottle

–          Remove any contaminated clothing and jewellery

–          Brush off any loose chemical (if it’s a powder or dry chemical) then flush the area with cool, steadily running water

–          If the chemical is in the eye flush the eye with clean water

–          If medical attention is required call for an ambulance and ensure the chemical bottle or content information is taken to the medical centre or hospital with the patient

2.       Slips and falls

One of the most common workplace injuries employers deal with across all industries are slips and falls. Whether it’s on a construction site, or in a corporate kitchen, or over an office extension cord, slips and falls from small heights (such as steps, chairs and small ladders) can be quite serious, and need to be treated properly.

–          If the person has hit their head, lost consciousness or suffered a suspected break, sprain or fracture call for medical assistance immediately

–          If minor cuts or abrasions have occurred, ensure you have a fully stocked onsite first aid kit and administer basic first aid to the affected area

For more serious injuries it is vital to have a solid understanding of CPR and First Aid. Medic One offer a range of Workplace First Aid courses to help prepare. 

3.       Stress & Mental Health

Often stress and mental health issues are not considered an injury, however the physical implications of mental health distress can be severe. Many people suffer from serious panic and anxiety attacks within the workplace, with the effects of serious panic attacks often appearing as symptoms of heart attacks or strokes including rapid heart rates, sweating and dizziness.

–          Keep the person calm

–          If the person takes medicine for anxiety, offer them some

–          Remove the person from the situation and take them to a quiet, private place if possible

–          Help slow the persons breathing by counting to 10

The rate of panic and anxiety attacks in the workplace are rapidly on the rise, and a sound understanding of Mental Health awareness should be a strong foundation in workplace health and safety. Medic One offer ABC Mental Health Awareness Courses throughout Australia to help workplaces understand, prepare and support mental health in the workplace.​

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