The different types of first aid kit and what they contain
29th January 2020
First aid kits come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, with varieties catered to a multitude of industries and environments.
From kits packed solely for individual use, to those equipped for sports teams, here’s a look at the different types of first aid kit and what you can expect to find in each.
Workplace and home
Both the HSE and BSI first aid kit standards are catered to dealing with common injuries that can occur either at home or in the workplace. Each is available in a variety of sizes to suit low, medium and high risk environments. You’ll find everything from plasters and bandages to gloves, dressings and thermal blankets to treat minor wounds, burns and sprains.
Food and catering environments can typically be high pressure and fast-moving environments. For this reason alone it’s not uncommon for accidents to occur, particularly when sharp and heated objects are involved. The HSE and BSI compliant catering first aid kits are equipped with these injuries in mind; you’ll find ample stock in terms of plasters, bandages and burn dressings.
Kitchens are also at risk of cross-contamination between bodily fluids, such as blood, and food products. Blue detectable plasters are a practical solution for protecting minor cuts and scrapes while handling consumables. Should they slip from the wound, they are easy to spot thanks to their vibrant colour and metal detectable strip.
Sports first aid kits contain the necessary items for dealing with incidents that unfold. At the basic level, these kits offer a selection of bandages and dressings, together with gloves, tape, sterile cleansing wipes, ice packs and safety pins. Larger sizes contain items that will be required by bigger clubs and events, such as eyewash pods, heat spray and an increase in essential item quantities.
Travel and motoring
When the new BS 8599-1 standard first aid kits were introduced in 2019, among the most notable amendments was the bringing together of the vehicle and travel first aid kit standards to create one unified kit. The two previous kits had been under conflict due to their similarity. This new travel first aid kit is designed for motorists and employees who use their vehicles for work.
The personal issue first aid kit was introduced in 2019 for lone workers. The likes of cleaners, maintenance and security personnel will often work alone away from a workplace with coworkers and a designated first aider. This kit is compact and easy to carry. It contains a comprehensive selection of essential items that are also found in the home and workplace first aid kit, including bandages, plasters and dressings.
Another new addition from 2019, the compact critical injury pack includes items that provide life-saving treatment to critically ill casualties. Each pack can be added to a first aid kit and includes trauma wound dressings and a tourniquet to deal with heavy bleeds.
A burns first aid kit is stocked full of burns dressings and burn gel sachets, among more common items such as gloves, tape and bandages. Burn gel cools burns in the same way as water, although stays on the burn and refrains from evaporating, thanks to its thickness. Gel, together with burn dressings, will protect the injured area from contamination and further damage.
School and nursery
These specialist kits have been curated for schools, nurseries and childminders. Youngsters are always susceptible to knocks and grazes. Such injuries, while often minor in terms of damage, can be traumatic experiences - particularly if blood is drawn. Children’s plasters can help distract from the latter by covering the scrape with cheerful colours and character prints.
Meeting your requirements
The BSI has published the following figures as a guide for the size and quantity of first aid kits required per workplace.
Low hazard workplaces (shops, offices, etc)
- Less than 25 employees: one small first aid kit
- 25-100 employees: one medium first aid kit
- More than 100 employees: one large first aid kit per 100 employees
High hazard workplaces (assembly work, food processing, etc)
- Less than 5 employees: one small first aid kit
- 5-25 employees: one medium first aid kit
- More than 25 employees: one large first aid kit per 25 employees
At First Aid Warehouse, we stock a range of first aid kits of all sizes. You’ll also find first aid refill packs that are ideal for ensuring you’re regularly replenishing the items you need. We also offer discounts on bulk and repeat orders. Contact us for details.