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The importance of first aid in schools

schedule 23rd August 2019 by Virtual College in Health and Safety Last updated on 23rd August 2019

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The importance of first aid awareness in schools

First aid is an important tool in quickly responding to accidents to ensure that injuries can be efficiently and promptly dealt with before a trained medical professional arrives to administer more specialised treatment. First aid in schools is especially helpful as children often get into accidents that can need swift care in order to prevent things from escalating. Whether it’s a minor injury or something more serious like a fracture, preventing further complications is paramount. Ensuring there are trained first aiders within the school will help a school be a safer environment for everyone. Here are just some of the benefits that come from having a first aider on site.

A quick response

Since some accidents won’t require any professional treatment provided injuries don’t get aggravated, a speedy response from a first aider will prevent things from getting any worse and provide the necessary care. It’s natural for children to be upset when they get injured, so reassuring them as soon as possible will help calm them down and get them feeling better.

First aid can save lives

When it comes to more serious injuries, first aid provides an essential role in keeping a casualty from getting worse and helps to stabilise their condition before professional help can arrive. CPR plays a core role in first aid training and quick application is crucial, so having a trained first aider on site who can stay composed under pressure is highly beneficial.

A greater sense of safety

Becoming trained on first aid methods will help you to feel more secure and confident when deal with emergency situations as you will know the most efficient ways to deal with the situation. An added benefit of this is that the people around you, be it students or other teachers and staff, will also feel more reassured knowing that there are trained people on site.

Helps to meet legal safety requirements

Aside from the practical medical applications, all UK workplaces (including schools) have a legal obligation to ensure that they have adequate health and safety measures under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. First aid makes up one of the core areas of health and safety, with first aid training for staff helping workplaces to meet these health and safety standards which have been set by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

There are specific regulations relating to first aid – the Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981, which set out what employers have to do. They place a responsibility on the employers to provide adequate resources to those who are injured whilst at work.

Though schools are not obliged by the regulations to supply first aid provisions for anyone other than staff (their employees), the Health and Safety Commission (HSC) guidance advises that they do provide a first aid service to non-employees and include them in their risk assessment. As schools have a legal responsibility to those in their care (such as pupils and visitors), they should consider the risk to these non-employees and make allowance for them when drawing up first aid policies.

Find out more

If you’re interested in finding out more about the application of first aid principles and how they can help your school, we offer a comprehensive e-learning courses on first aid. These are courses which can be accessed at any time to help train your staff at times which suit them, developed by experts to assist with practical first aid training.


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