Recent Changes To Resuscitation Council (UK) Guidelines And Why Your First Aid Trained Personnel Should Attend Annual Refresher Courses

Many companies have benefitted from sending their employees on our First Aid courses, since the days of HSE regulated courses through to the current system of OFQUAL regulated courses. You can be sure that your attendees are receiving all the latest – and correct – information about First Aid in the Workplace, as agreed by the HSE and Resuscitation Council (UK).

Most recently, the Resuscitation Council released its findings from research from the past 5 years, with some surprises in store……

  • There were very few changes to the administration of CPR, with just a few minor adjustments to resuscitation protocols to simplify procedures
  • There were some changes relating to treating asthmatics (particularly children) and low blood sugar in Diabetic casualties
  • Most of the changes related to the treatment of severe bleeds, including the use of tourniquets and haemostatic (blood clotting) dressings where appropriate, and if trained to do so

For many years First Aid training has not advocated the use of tourniquets (which is a device for stopping the blood flow through an artery or vein); however, it has now been recognised that, when used appropriately, tourniquets can save lives and First Aiders should be taught how to use them in cases of catastrophic bleeding.

Of course, if you work in an office, you are unlikely to be in a situation to need to use one, however if you work for a tree surgeon for example, that is a different matter!

These recent changes show how important it is to keep your First Aid trained personnel updated with practical skills and information; the HSE have long since recognised that the standard 3 years between mandatory First Aid training is too long, and therefore ‘strongly recommend’ that First Aiders of all levels also attend an annual half day refresher. This course is intended to be mostly practical work, but also with any updated information for the attendees.

After all, most First Aiders are only called to deal with fairly minor injuries like small cuts and sprained ankles, but if they were called to deal with an unconscious casualty 2 years and 11 months since their last training course, they would still be expected to try to save a life!