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First-aid log

A first-aid log is used to record even minor injuries in an accident at work so that insurance cover is effective.

What Is a First-Aid Log?

Every injury, every accident and every first aid given in companies, authorities, daycare centers and schools are correctly documented. The first-aid log is the most frequently used form of record-keeping to fulfill the documentation obligation according to § 24 DGUV regulation 1 (principles of prevention, formerly: BGV A1).

In companies, the manual of associations is mandatory. The information must be recorded in writing in the manual of associations and treated confidentially. The first-aid log must be stored locked in a cupboard and not together with the first-aid box if all employees have access to the first-aid box. It should be stored where only authorized persons have access to it.

It is not prescribed who or which office in the company is to be entrusted with the documentation. It makes sense to assign it to those who provide first aid (e.g. first aider, company paramedic or company doctor). Regardless of who is recording, the data must be protected against unauthorized access. This can be achieved by organizational measures (e.g. written operational instructions).

What Must Be Entered in a Manual of Associations?

Regulation 1 of the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV) regulates exactly which information must be entered in the manual of associations in the event of an injury or accident at the workplace.

The following information is required for documentation in the first-aid log:

  • Name of the injured or sick person
  • Date/time of the accident or damage to health
  • Place
  • Course of events
  • Type and extent of the injury/illness
  • Names of the witnesses

For first aid services, the following information must also be recorded:

  • Date and time of first aid
  • Type and manner of first aid measures
  • Work area/place of accident
  • Name of the first-aid provider

Why Do Accidents Have to Be Recorded in the Medical Record?

In the event of a work accident, the statutory accident insurance will cover treatment costs. However, reporting the accident to the responsible insurer is only obligatory if employees are unfit for work for at least 3 days due to the accident. In the case of a minor injury, this is instead the exception. Therefore such injuries are usually not reported to the insurance company.

However, injuries that do not appear to be worth mentioning must also be entered in the first-aid log. The complete documentation also serves to prove possible late consequences of accidents and injuries to the professional associations. The information serves as proof that it is an accident at work or work-related health impairment. Then the insurance company cannot refuse to cover the costs.

The obligation to keep the documentation is at least 5 years. There is no legal requirement as to what format a first-aid log must-have. According to the DGUV, it can be handwritten, but it can also be done using electronic data processing or a card index.

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