Health & Safety Executive (HSE) have announced that First Aiders certificates which expired on or after the 16th March 2020 will have their certificate expiry date extended until the 30th September 2020. This is to aid employers in meeting their legal responsibilities during this time.
The HSE expects all persons in England to be requalified by the 30th September and any Learner who has not achieved this will expire on the 1st October.
Returning to First Aid Training
After comprehensive discussions with key stakeholders within the industry, it has been decided that first aid training can resume once the Government has lowered the coronavirus threat level to 3 (England).
The UK is currently on approximately level 3.5 and it is anticipated that England will move to level 3 on the 1st June, but this has yet to be confirmed by the Government.
The Government is currently encouraging employees to return to work, where working from home is not possible. It is the responsibility of employers to ensure a safe working environment, of which first aid training is an essential part, so first aid training will need to resume to ensure employers can fulfil this legal responsibility. Independent and individual First Aiders must requalify to allow them to continue to practice First Aid.
Where training takes place, after lowering the COVID threat level to 3 (England), the following guidelines must be followed:
- A risk assessment of training delivery will be taken and mitigate all risks of possible spread of COVID-19
- Training lessons have been designed to ensure that there is no close contact between learners and or trainers and a 2m distance is always maintained. Sensible adaptions to training and assessment activities will be introduced to achieve this
- Appropriate handwashing facilities and / or alcohol hand sanitisers/wipes will be available for use as learners enter and exit the training room and throughout their time in the classroom
- A declaration and checks will be in place for preventing those with possible COVID-19 symptoms (fever, a new cough or loss of smell/taste) from entering the classroom. There will also be in place, a process to manage instances of people who develop symptoms during the delivery of any training
- A process will be in place to, ‘track and trace’ other learners if someone on the course develops symptoms within 2 weeks of attending first aid training in the form of individuals contact details being logged adhering to Data protection guidance
- All equipment that is used by learners will be thoroughly cleaned before use by an individual learner
- The first aid taught must reflect protocols that ensure the safe performance of first aid during the current COVID-19 outbreak that is supported by a body of medical opinion and the Resuscitation Council UK. This must still include the teaching of rescue breaths
These requirements have been created by the First Aid Awarding Organisation Forum.
Best will be forwarding more information regarding all HSE requirements as we move forward, so please keep your eye on your emails over the coming days/weeks.