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First aid in the workplace Program

The CNESST is responsible for the First Aid in the Workplace Program. Under this Program, the CNESST: 

The employer’s obligations with respect to first aid

The employer must: 

  • Always ensure that the number of first aiders required under the Regulation is present  
  • post the names of first aiders (in French only) in a visible place 
  • depending on the number of first aiders required, appoint workers who will be first aiders, while ensuring that the nature of their work does not compromise their ability to administer first aid promptly and efficiently 
  • register the appointed workers for training. The training must be given by a provider
  • recognize that first aiders are considered to be at work and pay them during their training and each time they are required to intervene as first aiders during their work hours 
  • provide an adequate number of first aid kits in the workplace in accordance with the standards 

Number of first aiders required

An employer must ensure they have the required number of first aiders for their establishment or construction site. Depending on the workplace and the number of workers or volunteers per shift, the number of first aiders varies.

All establishments, except construction sites and establishments in the forestry sector
50 or fewer workers 1 first aider
51 to 150 workers 2 first aiders
151 or more workers Add one first aider for each group of 100 workers


Construction site
50 or fewer workers 1 first aider
51 to 150 workers 2 first aiders
As of 151 workers, add one first aider Add one first aider for each group of 100 workers


Etablishment in the forestry sector
5 or fewer workers 1 first aider
6 to 10 workers 2 first aiders
As of 11 workers Add one first aider for each group of 5 workers


An establishment with 228 workers divided into 2 shifts should have a total of 5 first aiders.

Quart de travail Nombre de travailleurs Number of first aiders required
1st shift 155 workers 3 first aiders
2nd shift 53 workers 2 first aiders
Total 228 workers 5 first aiders
  • First shift: 155 workers are present. As of 151 workers, 3 first aiders are required plus 1 first aider for every additional 100 workers. Three first aiders must be present for this shift. 
  • Second shift: 53 workers are present. Between 51 and 150 workers, 2 first aiders must be present. 

First aid course

To become a first aider, a worker must complete a 16-hour first aid course given by one of our providers. Every first aider must renew their occupational first aid certificate by taking the course again every 3 years.

How to register a worker for a first aid course

To register a worker for the 16-hour occupational first aid course, an employer must complete the Demande de formation de secouristes form and send it to the provider they have chosen.

Laws and regulations

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