WorkSafeBC: Occupational First Aid Regulatory Change

text provided by WorkSafeBC

On November 1, 2024, amendments to the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Regulation relating to occupational first aid will come into effect. The changes mean employers across the province will need to review their current first aid plans, supplies, and equipment and make adjustments.  

Below is an update on our implementation of these amendments.  

Draft guidelines now available 

WorkSafeBC develops OHS Guidelines to assist employers in the application and interpretation of changes to the OHS Regulation. We have posted the draft OHS Guidelines for Part 3 – Occupational First Aid for public comment.  

Stakeholders can submit comments and revision requests until 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2, 2024.  

If you have questions or comments relating to the draft guidelines, please email  

Workplace first aid assessments 

Under the amended OHS Regulation, employers will have a duty to establish their workplace first aid requirements in consultation with their workers. Employers will need to complete a written first aid assessment for each workplace. 

This assessment will also help employers determine the appropriate first aid services needed to ensure prompt first aid treatment and transport to a medical facility.  

Additional resources, including a digital tool to help employers assess their workplace, will be available on in the coming months.  

New first aid training and kit requirements 

The amendments to the OHS Regulation also align with standards established by the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) — benchmarks used across the country to guide workplace first aid programs. This will result in new naming conventions for Occupational First Aid (OFA) credentials, along with changes to the course duration for the intermediate (currently OFA 2) level. However, anyone holding a current valid first aid certificate under the current requirements can continue to use it until it expires.  

First aid kit and equipment requirements will also change to align with the CSA standards. Once an employer has assessed their workplace factors, they can refer to the draft OHS Guideline to determine the minimum first aid kit supplies and equipment they will need. Employers must supplement existing kits with any new contents required. Where supplies have changed by size or description only, employers may move to these new contents when new kits are purchased, or as supplies are replaced.  

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