New St John Campaign to Take SA Businesses from Worst Aid to First Aid

New St John Campaign to Take SA Businesses from Worst Aid to First Aid

18 February 2015


First Aid Compliance in the Workplace >>


St John Ambulance SA has introduced an ingenious advertising campaign to highlight the importance of reducing injuries and saving lives in South Australian workplaces.Today, the state’s leading provider of first aid services and training will launch an irreverent advertising campaign – ‘Worst Aid to First Aid’ – aimed directly at South Australian employers and employees.

The new campaign is timely, following several incidents in South Australian workplaces with serious and costly consequences.

A 2012 incident at fast food giant Hungry Jacks which saw a worker badly burned after falling into a machine filtering hot oil has recently been in the spotlight. In this case, it was determined that first aid was not provided immediately following the incident, nor were there clear or appropriate procedures in place, leading to far worse outcomes for both the injured victim and the company.


Disturbingly, St John’s research shows a majority of South Australian workplaces aren’t compliant with the First Aid Code of Practice.


Thirty four people have tragically lost their lives through workplace incidents and injuries in South Australia since 2012. In the last financial year, SafeWork SA has issued more than 600 prohibition notices in relation to work health and safety matters and 1300 improvement notices.


St John Ambulance SA Chief Executive Officer, Sharyn Mitten, said the goal in social marketing is to devise a message that captures the attention of the target audience and leads them to adopt the desired safe behavior.


“We should not mistake the seriousness of this campaign because of its irreverent nature. We are committed to preventing injury and saving lives in South Australian workplaces,” said Ms Mitten.


“Workplace safety starts with being prepared, and this often comes down to the basics – such as having the right number of people trained in first aid and fully stocked first aid kits.


“Being able to provide medical care and respond to an incident or emergency situation can sometimes literally be the difference between life and death, or at the very least prevent or reduce injuries,” said Ms Mitten.


With South Australia’s adoption of nationally uniform work health and safety laws two years ago, all South Australian businesses are expected to have a first aid risk evaluation to identify the equipment, procedures and number of trained people they need.


“Worryingly, in South Australia, we believe that a very large number of organisations simply aren’t aware of the First Aid Workplace Code of Practice,” said Ms Mitten.


“This leaves a situation where not only people’s safety could be in danger, but businesses are failing their legal responsibilities and are therefore at risk of prosecution, if an incident occurs.


“Safety in the workplace is not a benefit, it’s a person’s right.”


According to Safe Work SA, around 20,000 South Australians were injured at work in the 12-months to July 2014 with community services, manufacturing, wholesale, retail and the construction industry continuing to account for the most workplace incidents and injuries as well as the most serious.


Both SafeWork SA and Business SA have applauded St John’s new campaign.


“Reducing the human toll of work related injury is paramount,” said SafeWork SA Executive Director, Bryan Russell.


“Campaigns like this one support our inspector focus on increasing workplace safety through active involvement with employers, businesses and workers to foster understanding and ensure everyone is meeting their responsibilities,” Mr Russell said.


Business SA Chief Executive, Nigel McBride said the campaign would be useful in helping businesses understand the importance of having proper first aid facilities.


“Small businesses in particular often don’t have the resources or the time to be fully conversant with the raft of different regulations that they have to comply with,” he said.


“Business SA is always keen to help members understand their compliance obligations and we’ll be working alongside St John to highlight what is required of businesses and the benefits.” he said.


St John offers first aid risk assessments across a broad range of industries and businesses which factor in the unique needs of individual workplaces, and can assist those who have a duty of care to implement procedures to become legally compliant with the First Aid Workplace Code of Practice. Business SA, with considerable practical knowledge of Work Health & Safety (WHS) matters, offers support and bespoke advice to businesses, such as on WHS policies and procedures and manual handling and machine guarding assessments.


The ‘Worst Aid to First Aid’ advertising campaign will launch via digital advertising from 18 February and also includes posters in workplaces and newspaper advertising.


Visit for more information.
Or, to go from Worst Aid to First Aid take our FREE online Workplace Compliance Checklist.