What is the best way to manage insect bites and stings?

 

Common reactions to insect bites and stings are mild. Often causing little more than stinging, redness and itching or minor swelling. Rarely do insect bites and stings, such as from a bee, a wasp, a hornet, a fire ant or a scorpion, can result in severe reactions.

To take care of an insect bite or sting that causes a mild reaction:

  • Move to a safe area to avoid more bites or stings.
  • If needed, remove the stinger – Click here for more info on insect poison extractors.
  • Wash the area with soap and water.
  • Apply a cool compress. Use a cloth dampened with cold water or filled with ice. This helps reduce pain and swelling. If the injury is on an arm or leg, elevate it.
  • Apply 0.5 or 1 percent hydrocortisone cream, calamine lotion or a baking soda paste to the bite or sting several times daily until your symptoms go away.
  • Take an antihistamine (Benadryl, others) to reduce itching.
  • Usually, the signs and symptoms of a bite or sting disappear in a day or two. If you’re concerned — even if your reaction is minor — call your doctor.

Call 911 or your local emergency number if the injured person experiences:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Swelling of the lips, eyelids or throat
  • Dizziness, faintness or confusion
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Hives
  • Nausea, cramps or vomiting
  • A scorpion sting and is a child
  • Take these actions immediately while waiting for medical help:

Ask the person if he or she is carrying an epinephrine autoinjector (EpiPen, Auvi-Q, others) to treat an allergic attack.

If the person says he or she needs to use an autoinjector, ask whether you should help inject the medication. This is usually done by pressing the autoinjector against the person’s thigh and holding it in place for several seconds.

Loosen tight clothing and cover the person with a blanket. Don’t give him or her anything to drink.

If the person is vomiting, position him or her to prevent choking.

Begin CPR if the person shows no signs of circulation, such as breathing, coughing or movement.

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First Aid Service – CPR Certification – First Aid Cabinet refill – Facility Services – First Aid – Safety Training


First Aid Service – Why Outsource?

Have you ever utilized a first aid service before? Do you know that such a service exists?

Often times businesses attempt to handle the first aid and safety needs for their company by themselves. Perhaps this is possible when a company is small and has only a few employees. However, through the challenges of a company growing and becoming more viable in its industry, first aid and safety needs could begin to take a backseat, leaving them vulnerable.

Having a first aid service company manage your first aid and safety needs can be very beneficial.

  1. Allow’s you to focus on your business, its growth, and more complex issues that come with that.

  2. Ensure that you have an adequate supply of products to meet or exceed the latest A.N.S.I or O.S.H.A standards, and help you understand and comply with those standards.

  3. Having this service could also have a positive impact on employee morale and increased productivity.

In this article, we are going to go over the recommended fill list for an industrial first aid cabinet.

The areas of first aid that your business first aid cabinet should cover as A.N.S.I defines them are:

  1. Minor wounds Bandages
    • Antiseptics
  2. Major wounds Compresses
    • Gauze
    • Tape
  3. Burns Burn gels
    • Sprays
    • Ointments
    • ice packs
  4. Eye injuries Eyewash
    • Eyecups
  5. Personal comfort Analgesics
      • Ibuprofen
      • Non-aspirin
      • Aspirin

Putting together a first-aid program yourself that meets the above areas can be a real challenge. It could be difficult to source all of these items, especially in single unit dose packaging that helps to mitigate cross-contamination. Most items sold and purchased through pharmacies or large box stores are meant for personal or home first aid kits.

A service company like UniFirst First Aid + Safety will meet with you and your team to design a program based on your needs and environment. Knowing that your first aid and safety needs are being handled by professionals from UniFirst First Aid + Safety, will allow you to put your mind at rest and focus on other areas of your business.

 

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May is Global Health and Fitness Month

Global Employee Health & Fitness Month (GEHFM) is an international and national observance of health and fitness in the workplace. The goal of GEHFM is to promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to employers and their employees through worksite health promotion activities and environments.

GEHFM is presented by the National Association for Health & Fitness

Employers everywhere are invited to participate in GEHFM. Throughout GEHFM employers will challenge their employees to create Healthy Moments, form Healthy Groups, and develop a Culminating Project. Participants will be able to log these activities on the GEHFM website throughout the month, allowing employers and employees to track, share, and promote their individual and group activities.

Healthy Moments are occasions of healthy eating, physical activity, or personal/environmental health. Examples include: going for a walk; cooking a healthy meal; participating in an exercise class; quitting smoking; scheduling a health assessment and going to the doctor

Healthy Groups are formed to create a sustainable activity continuing even beyond the month. Examples include: walking, jogging or cycling interest groups; healthy recipe or healthy lunch groups; sports team

The Culminating Project is an event or project that promotes health throughout the whole company or community. Examples include: planning a company 5K; planting a community garden; creating a company or family fitness event; adopting a company-wide physical activity standard or policy

When is GEHFM?

GEHFM is held during the month of May every year. Healthy Moments occur daily, even multiple times a day, and are created by individuals and groups. Healthy Groups implement activities to be performed several times throughout the month. Finally, the Culminating Project is developed during GEHFM and executed at the end of May.

Where does GEHFM take place?

Employers and employees all over the world implement and participate in healthy activities conveniently at the workplace and within their communities.

Why should employers participate?

GEHFM is a great way to kickoff wellness and fitness programs, and bring excitement and complement existing programs. Worksite wellness programs have been shown to benefit the employer through enhanced employee productivity, improved health care costs, reduced employee absenteeism, and decreased rates of illness and injuries. These programs benefit employees by lowering stress levels, increasing well-being, self-image, and self-esteem, improving physical fitness, increasing stamina, increasing job satisfaction, and potentially reducing weight.

GEHFM provides fun and innovative ways to incorporate wellness in the workplace.

 

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May is National Electrical Awareness Month

May is National Electrical Safety Month.

We often don’t think about electricity on a daily basis. We flip a switch, plug something in or charge a cell phone expecting it to work. However, if not used or maintained appropriately, electricity can pose serious risks.

Over the last ten years, more than 30,000 workers have been injured in workplace electrical accidents. While electrical hazards are not the leading cause of on-the-job injuries and accidents, they are disproportionately fatal and costly.

These injuries not only disrupt the lives of the workers and their families but also impact the productivity of employers. The good news is that most on-the-job electrocutions and electrical injuries can be prevented by following a few necessary steps.

The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) is the leading authority on workplace electrical safety. ESFI began National Electrical Safety Month in the 90’s and is the primary driving behind the annual campaign. ESFI recognizes that each work environment presents different electrical hazards. ESFI’s workplace safety materials provide valuable information to help employees make safe choices every day and tips for creating a safer work environment, whether work takes place in an office, on a job site, or in a manufacturing setting.

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Source: ESFI

2019 National Electrical Safety Advocate Guide


What’s the difference between a sprain and a strain, and what the heck is R.I.C.E Therapy?

During these times of isolation at home, at-home workouts have become more popular. Exercise is good for our bodies and mental well being but as with any physical activity, an injury can always happen. Do you know what to do if you have an accident such as a sprain or strain? And what it the correct way to take care of an injury like a strain? Read on for what the difference is between a sprain and a strain and how to treat both.

Sprains and strains are often used interchangeably. While very common for a first responder to encounter, they are not the same thing.

Sprain

A sprain is a stretch or tear in a ligament. Ligaments are bands of fibrous tissue that connect bones to bones at joints.

Excessive force applied to a joint can cause these ligaments to tear – this is a sprain. Usually when a person falls, twists, or is hit in a way that forces the body out of its normal position.

The most common type of sprain is a sprained ankle. About 25,000 people sprain an ankle every day.

Strain

A strain is also a stretch or tear, but it happens in a muscle or a tendon. Tendons link muscles to the bones. This is very common in contact sports like football, boxing and hockey.

Treatment of sprains and strains

Although there is a difference between sprains and strains the first aid treatment of both is the same.

This is known as RICE therapy.

-Rest

-Ice

-Comfortable support / Compression

-Elevation

This simple first aid treatment will relieve swelling and subsequently relieve the pain from these injuries.

Always seek medical attention if the pain and swelling don’t start to lessens after 24 to 72 hours.

 

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Is your First Aid program compliant?

Ever wondered if your company meets ANSI standards for workplace First Aid?

As we all seek to limit the number of hospital visits, now is a good time for companies to review their First Aid Programs. Below is some important information on First Aid compliance requirements.

ANSI (American National Standards Institute) Minimum Requirements for Workplace First Aid Kits and Supplies (ANSI Z308.1) establishes the minimum requirements for first aid kit supplies. First aid kits are classified based on the assortment and quantity of first aid supplies intended to deal with most types of injuries and sudden illnesses that may be encountered in the workplace.

5.1.1 Class A Kit’s

Class A first aid kits are intended to provide a basic range of products to deal with most common types of injuries encountered in the workplace including: major wounds, minor wounds (cuts and abrasions), minor burns and eye injuries. First aid kits designated as Class A shall contain the assortment of compliant supplies in the quantities specified in the table below.

FA Small Cab

ANSI First Aid Standards

5.1.2 Class B Kits 

Class B kits are intended to provide a broader range and quantity of supplies to deal with injuries encountered in more populated, complex and/or high risk workplace environments. First aid kits designated as Class B shall contain the assortment of compliant supplies in the quantities specified in the table below.

ANSI Class B Cabinet

For more information about First Aid Cabinet Service click here

 

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Do you know how to recognize and help someone who is choking?

We are living in interesting and challenging times right now, to say the least, more and more people are working from home and self-isolating, which can bring a whole new set of challenges. 

A simple but common accident that can happen at work in the office or at home is choking, while it’s scary to think about, we have put together some tips to help recognize and act upon in the event of choking. Choking is a common cause of accidental death and often preventable. Objects such as food, candy or small objects can easily become lodged in the airway if they are accidentally ‘breathed in’ rather than swallowed.

Signs and symptoms of choking

  • Unable to speak or cough
  • Grasping or pointing to the throat
  • Distressed look on the face
  • First aid treatment of choking

Encourage the patient to cough, If the choking is only mild, this will clear the obstruction and the patient should be able to speak to you.

If the obstruction is not cleared:

Give back blows

Call for help, but don’t leave the patient yet.

Bend them forward so the head is lower than the chest. For a smaller child, you can place them over your knee to do this.

Give up to 5 firm blows between the shoulder blades with the palm of your hand. Check between blows and stop if you clear the obstruction.

If the obstruction is still not cleared:

Give abdominal thrusts

  • Stand behind the person and wrap your arms around the waist.
  • Place your clenched fist just above the person’s navel. Grab your fist with your other hand.
  • Quickly pull inward and upward as if trying to lift the person up.
  • Perform a total of 5 abdominal thrusts.
  • If the blockage is still not dislodged, continue cycles of 5 back blows and 5 abdominal thrusts until the object is coughed up or the person starts to breathe or cough.
  • Take the object out of his mouth only if you can see it. Never do a finger sweep unless you can see the object in the person’s mouth

Give CPR, if necessary

If the obstruction comes out, but the person becomes unconscious, begin CPR.

Continue CPR until medical personnel arrives.

 

What if I am choking and nobody is around to help?

It’s a scary situation whether you’re in a room full of people or alone at home. But there is a fast and effective solution: the Heimlich Maneuver®.

The best way to dislodge an obstruction is the Heimlich Maneuver. And if you’re alone, you can perform the Self-Heimlich.

Even though you won’t be able to speak when you’re choking, call 9-1-1 so help is on the way if you need it. Then take action to dislodge the obstruction.

Here’s how you can save your life with the Self-Heimlich:

  • Position yourself behind a chair or on the edge of a table.
  • Press your abdomen, the same area you’d place your fist on another person, against a table or chair with quick inward and upward thrusts.
  • Repeat until the object is dislodged.

You can also watch the Heimlich Heroes Self-Heimlich video for a closer look at how to perform the maneuver on yourself.

 

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OSHA – An Amazing Resource You Might Not Know About….

OSHA Can Help In a Surprising Way…

OSHA’s offers on-site consultation program and the best part? it’s FREE and confidential for small & medium-sized businesses operating across the U.S.

A great benefit that OSHA offers to small, medium or newly established businesses is a FREE safety consultation service. OSHA on-site consultation services are provided to companies who request the service, with priority given to high-hazard worksites. This free program is available to small & medium businesses operating in the United States.

Don’t worry, OSHA is here to help with this valuable program. These on-site consultation services are not part of the OSHA enforcement department and you will not get penalties or citations, even if things at your company aren’t quite perfect. If applicable, companies may even qualify for a one-year exemption from routine OSHA inspections by utilizing the free service. Your obligation is to make a commitment and follow through with correction serious workplace safety and health hazards.

OSHA consultants are from state agencies and universities and they work with employers to help identify workplace hazards. The consultants will also provide advice on OSHA compliance standards and can also assist the company to set up health and safety programs that fit the business.

On-Site Consultants Will:

  • Help you recognize hazards in your workplace.

  • Suggest general approaches or options for solving a safety or health problem.

  • Identify kinds of help available if you need further assistance.

  • Provide you a written report summarizing findings.

  • Assist you to develop or maintain an effective safety and health programs.

  • Provide training and education for you and your employees.

The On-Site Consultants Will Not:

  • Issue citations or propose penalties for violations of OSHA standards.

  • Report possible violations to OSHA enforcement staff.

  • Guarantee that your workplace will “pass” an OSHA inspection.

Theis program is entirely voluntary, OSHA will not approach you about participating. Any employer who wants to benefit from this free service must request it.

Visit OSHA’s Consultation Directory at osha.gov to learn more.

 

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5 Forklift Safety Elements – Part 4 “Understand The Stability Triangle”

Understand the ‘stability triangle’

An unloaded lift truck’s center of gravity – where the weight has equal concentration – typically is higher than that of a personal vehicle. The load has its own center of gravity, and once it’s picked up, a combined center of gravity between the load and truck is established.

Lift trucks are built on three-point suspension systems, the physics of which resemble a triangle. Support points lie at both ends of the front axle, with another located at the center of the rear axle. Together, this forms a “stability triangle” that operators must stay within when the truck is in motion.

Numerous factors can cause a lift truck to vacate the stability triangle, including unstable, heavy, wide or raised loads; fast starts and stops; taking corners too quickly; and rough terrain.

Here are several tips to help prevent forklifts from tipping over:

  • Before operation, ensure a load is completely stable and secured on the forks.
  • Keep loads low to the ground during operation.
  • Keep loads uphill when climbing or descending an incline.
  • Drive slowly in wet or slippery conditions.
  • Slow down during turns, and honk the horn upon encountering traffic.

Stay tuned for Part – 5 ” Know about load basics” coming next week.

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Source:https://www.safetyandhealthmagazine.com/articles/16138-elements-of-forklift-safety


Why Employees Need First Aid Training

 

Whether the workplace is an office or a construction site, it has two common traits — valuable employees who may be injured or become ill and the need to protect them with adequate first aid procedures.

The good health and resulting productivity of employees is one area that is often overlooked as a means of improving a company’s profitability. The size of this opportunity is indicated by a National Safety Council estimate that in 1997, there were more than 80 million lost workdays due to unintentional injuries. The astounding cost to American businesses was $127 billion, or an average of $980 per worker.

Whether employees work in a high-hazard or low-hazard environment, they face a variety of risks. Shock, bleeding, poisonings, burns, temperature extremes, musculoskeletal injuries, bites and stings, medical emergencies and distressed employees in confined spaces are just a sampling of the first aid emergencies which might be encountered in your business. These risks are compounded when employees don’t feel well. Their lack of concentration can result in costly injuries.

If your employees aren’t prepared to handle these types of injuries on all shifts and their coworkers are left untreated until an ambulance arrives, a victim’s condition may worsen and injuries can become far more debilitating, which leads to greater medical costs and lost productivity.

It makes good business sense to provide first aid and appropriate training to all your employees. By making such a minimal investment in keeping your employees safe and well-trained, you could net big returns, along with a competitive advantage. Moreover, it’s the law.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires businesses to provide first aid and CPR training to employees in the absence of a nearby clinic or hospital. While safety always begins with prevention, not every work-related injury can be prevented. Your primary first aid training goal should be to give employees the necessary tools and information they need to care for an ill or injured person, if necessary, until advanced help arrives.

“The outcome of occupational injuries depends not only on the severity of the injury, but also on the rendering of first aid care,” writes OSHA in its 1991 Guidelines for Basic First Aid Training Programs. “Prompt, properly administered first aid care can mean the difference between life and death, rapid vs. prolonged recovery, and temporary vs. permanent disability.” Since each site is so different, OSHA requires first aid training to be specific to the needs of the workplace. Proper training varies with the industry, number of employees and proximity to emergency care.

Although OSHA’s 1991 guidelines specify the requirements for a first aid program, OSHA does not teach or certify programs. Therefore, employers are faced with numerous programs to choose from, and the choice can be difficult. Because of this, a consensus group comprised of a panel of government and private experts developed the National Guidelines for First Aid in Occupational Settings in 1997.

This new and detailed curriculum identifies the skill training that makes a workplace first aid responder competent to provide care. Responding to OSHA’s requirement that every employer provide first aid assistance in the workplace, these guidelines document the minimum knowledge and skills necessary for an individual to provide basic life support care to an ill or injured person until professional emergency response arrives.

While starting a first aid program can be simple and inexpensive, it involves several essential steps:

Recognize that it is your responsibility as an employer to determine the requirements for your first aid program. As you assess your workplace, be mindful of the jobsite or work process that could cause illness or injury to employees. What types of accidents could reasonably occur in your workplace? Consider such things as falls, hazardous machinery and exposure to harmful substances. Be sure to put your evaluation in writing for reference purposes. Remember that, while OSHA does not recommend nor approve programs, it may evaluate your program’s adequacy during an inspection.

Powered Industrial Truck Safety

Assess the location and availability of a medical facility to your workplace. If a hospital, clinic or other such emergency response is not readily available, for instance, within three to four minutes, you must have at least one employee trained in first aid and CPR per shift. There is no recommended number of trained employees to have on staff; it largely depends on your facility’s size and type of operations. Responding in a timely manner can mean the difference between life and death, so it is crucial that you have an appropriate number of employees trained.

For organizations in multiple sites, such as construction operations, a larger number of employees must be trained. Many experts believe all employees should know how to provide first aid and CPR to ensure that help is always at hand. At a minimum, each department or location should have a responder available on each shift.

Make sure you have suitable first aid supplies readily available at all times. Effective Aug. 17, 1998, OSHA added an Appendix A to its very basic First Aid and Medical standard found in 29 CFR 1910.151. It requires the employer to reference ANSI Z308.1-1978, Minimum Requirements for Industrial Unit-Type First Aid Kits.

According to OSHA, the contents of the kit listed in the ANSI standard should be adequate for small worksites. However, larger or multiple operations should consider the need for additional first aid kits and additional types of first aid equipment and supplies in larger quantities. OSHA suggests consulting a local fire and rescue department appropriate medical professional or first aid supplier for assistance in these circumstances.

FA Cabinet

OSHA recommends you periodically assess your kit and increase your supplies as needed. Place your first aid supplies in an easily accessible area, and inform all your employees of its location. Along with a well-stocked, workplace-specific first aid kit, other basic supplies normally include emergency oxygen, blankets, stretchers, directional signs, eyewash stations and burn stations.

In addition to these items, if blood-related incidents are anticipated, you must provide appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) as mandated in OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogens standard (29 CFR 1910.1030). It lists specific PPE for this type of exposure, such as gloves, gowns, face shields, masks, and eye protection.

On-site safety inspections, review of hazards and emergency dispatch, assessment, implementation, escape and treatment should be discussed in your training program. Employees must be trained to act and think quickly to avoid delayed treatment during an emergency. Ask yourself, whether each employee knows how to report an injury or illness.

Outline the accident investigating and reporting procedures and relay that to your employees as part of your company’s policy. Early recognition and treatment of an injury or illness is essential.

Employees must be aware of emergency contact information. It is best to post emergency procedures and emergency office contact numbers with your first aid supplies or in another highly visible and accessible area. Make sure that your field personnel also have suitable supplies and office contact numbers readily available. Appoint an employee in each department to watch for hazards and evaluate its current first aid status. Set a deadline to report any hazards or first aid needs to a manager or supervisor for improvement or correction.

Since people tend to forget their first aid training over time, OSHA recommends refresher training be conducted to recharge employees’ knowledge of first aid procedures. At a minimum, employees should be certified annually to perform CPR and once every three years to perform first aid. If such training sounds burdensome, consider that it can produce safer work practices and fewer incidents among employees.

Keeping the workplace safe involves three basic elements: steps to prevent or minimize accidents, adequate first aid supplies and proper first aid training. The employer uses training to make sure its employees know what to do, how to do it and who is in charge in case a first aid or emergency situation occurs. Proper first aid training not only satisfies OSHA requirements, but fosters good will among employees, who recognize the care that their company expends to provide a safe and healthy environment for its most valuable asset: its employees.

 

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Source: https://www.ehstoday.com/news/ehs_imp_33547