How we’ve made our class-based courses COVID secure

How we’ve made our class-based courses COVID secure

We understand that there are lots of concerns around the delivery and assessment of First Aid at Work and Paediatric First Aid qualifications in light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). This is a high priority for us.

Now that non-essential training is going to be possible for all those who have put in place strict measures for their training, we have put measures into place to reduce as much risk as reasonably possible for our customers.

Training will only take place where this is permissible in accordance with the UK Government and devolved administrations or regional restrictions.

We provide individual learner training packs with all the relevant first aid equipment for courses as well as faceshields, masks and hand sanitizer to reduce the risk of infection.

We are doing the following:
•Risk assess our training delivery and mitigate all risks of possible spread of COVID-19.
• Design lessons 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 must be introduced to achieve this.
• Ensuring appropriate handwashing facilities and / or alcohol hand
sanitisers are available for use as learners enter and exit the training room and throughout their time in the classroom.
• Have in place a process for preventing those with possible COVID-19 symptoms (fever, a new cough or loss of smell/taste) from entering the classroom. Have in place a process to manage instances of people who develop symptoms during the delivery of any training.
• Have a process in place to be notified, then ‘track and trace’ other learners if someone on the course develops symptoms within 2 weeks of attending first aid training.
• All equipment that is used by our learners will be thoroughly cleaned before use by an individual learner.
• The first aid taught reflects 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.

Classroom set up:

  1. Learners must be seated 2 metres apart.
    Class induction process:
  2. On arrival, screen all learners and exclude anyone exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms which are a new continuous cough and/or a temperature >37.8oC and/or a loss of taste/smell. We will check temperatures safely and non-invasively, do so, whenever a non-contact thermometer is available
  3. Check that no learner is in a situation where they should be self-isolating (e.g. a family member has had symptoms, or the learner should be shielding as they are in an at-risk group). Exclude from the course as necessary.
  4. ON ARRIVAL, give each learner an alcohol wipe/gel/sanitiser and ask them to thoroughly sanitise hands. Instruct them that if they need to cough/sneeze this should be done into a tissue that is disposed of immediately. Failing that they should cough into a bent elbow (better than a bare hand) and NEVER cough/sneeze without covering their mouth/nose. If someone coughs on their hand or uses a tissue, they should use alcohol wipes/sanitizer immediately.
    Supervise closely to ensure that everyone adheres to this throughout the course.
  5. Show learners the videos below on how COVID-19 spreads and how to wash your hands:
  6. Explain clearly that no one should touch their mouth, nose or eyes unless they have just washed their hands or sanitised.
  7. Provide sufficient alcohol hand sanitiser in the classroom for learners throughout the entire course. Explain what facilities are available for hand washing.
    During the course:
  8. Use as many manikins as possible to minimise sharing and keep one manikin to the same small group of learners all the way through the course to prevent the possibility of course-wide infection spread.
  9. Prior to CPR practise, explain to learners the protection that is in place to prevent infection during CPR practise. A detailed guide on manikin hygiene can be found here.
  10. At the end of every theory session, ask learners to sanitise or wash their hands
  11. Before and after each practical session, ask learners to sanitise or wash their hands.
  12. Ensure that 2 meters of physical distancing is maintained between all learners and between learners and Trainers unless relevant close contact (less than 2m distance) is absolutely necessary for teaching or assessment purposes.
    Personal Proactive Equipment (PPE)
  13. The latest joint statement from FAQP and FAAOF now discusses use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in the classroom. This updated guidance aligns with the expectation that first aiders in the workplace will be provided with and be expected to wear appropriate PPE for emergency first aid incidents.
  14. Face masks – Learners should be trained in the correct use of 3-ply civilian face masks and BOTH people must wear them during any close contact
  15. Gloves – We are aware that gloves are very difficult to source at the present time and we are conscious that it is not appropriate to deplete stocks that are required for healthcare settings. Therefore, an acceptable alternative is to sanitise hands immediately before and after any close contact practise/assessment. The learner should verbalise that they would wear protective gloves for the procedure before commencing.

Note: Meetings have been held for regulatory organisations, the HSE and other known medical professionals, we can share a number of statements about First Aid training, how to comply with government led advice on social distancing and sharing more information on extending existing certificates that expired on or after 16 March 2020 as outlined by the HSE.

Note: It was proposed that non-essential training can commence on the 15th June falling in line with unessential shops opening in England on the same date – this is on condition that training providers follow all Government led guidelines, risk assess, have all essential PPE and meet strict classroom requirements.