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Understanding ANSI 2015 Requirements and OSHA Regulations for First Aid Kits

OSHA (U.S Department of Labor Occupational Safety & Health Administration) is the main federal agency charged with the enforcement of safety and health legislation. OSHA regulations regarding first aid kits are contained in the Code of Federal Regulations under section 29 CFR 1910.151 and in Appendix A. OSHA does not provide specifications for first aid kit contents per se but defines mandatory requirements for availability of kits on worksites. In Appendix A of the OSHA guidelines, ANSI is referenced as the originator of first aid kit specifications and minimum contents requirements (see ANSI requirements in more detail below).

ANSI Z308.1-2015 / American National Standard Minimum Requirements for Workplace First Aid Kits and Supplies are now effective.

One of the most significant changes from previous editions was the introduction of two classes of first aid kits, based on the assortment and quantity of first aid supplies. Class A kits are designed to deal with most common workplace injuries, such as minor cuts, abrasions, and sprains. First aid kits designated as Class B include a broader range and quantity of supplies to deal with injuries in more complex or high-risk environments.

First aid kits are also designated by Type (I, II, III, or IV) depending on the work environment in which they are to be used. For example, Type 1 identifies kits used indoors and permanently mounted to a wall or other structure; Type IV kits are suitable for outdoor use and must pass tests for corrosion, moisture, and impact resistance.

Workplaces vary widely in their degree of hazards, location, size, amount of staff training, and availability of professional medical services. With the exception of the Logging Operations standard, 29 CFR 1910.266, OSHA standards do not require specific first-aid-kit contents. This includes the Medical Services and First Aid standards in both general industry and construction, 1910.151 and 1926.50. These OSHA requirements cite ANSI Z308.1 as the minimum required.

Employers should evaluate their own workplaces to determine whether additional supplies or kits are needed, based on the size and specific hazards of their workplaces.

The 2015 ANSI revision introduced two classes of first aid kits

Class A kits with contents designed to deal with most common types of workplace injuries.
Class B kits with a broader range and quantity of supplies to deal with injuries in more complex or high-risk environments.

ANSI Z308.1-2015 Required Contents

In order to be ANSI compliant, First Aid Kits must contain the following components

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