On Monday (19th September), the VPA team took the chance to become more knowledgeable first aiders through an ‘Emergency First Aid at Work‘ day course. So instead of heading off to Boarshaw Clough, Monday morning found us sat in a wide, semi-circle around a dummy at Groundwork’s board room, with most of us not expecting what came next…
Our day was taken by a great guy from ABC Response Training, who first ran through ‘DR ABC’: Danger, Response (by shouting, shaking or pinching, whichever works), Airways, Breathing and Circulation – each of the main checks a first aider must know to perform in the correct order, when helping someone affected by an injury.
We then all had the opportunity to practice, approaching an injury scenario on the “poorly” dummy lying in the middle of the room. This meant putting into practice DR ABC, talking to the injured dummy all the time: trying to elicit a response (nope, none), checking for breathing (cheek to mouth, hand on chest – none), and finally delivering 30 chest compressions followed by two resuscitation breaths.
A series of other injury discussions then followed, many introduced with several images (a little discomforting for the more squeamish among us). We also learned how to avoid or deal with such injuries where possible. A few included creating makeshift casts and slings, safely tying up injured legs, and placing people into the recovery position.
Last but not least, everyone was split into groups to practice their newly acquired first aid skills. One member from each group was shuffled out of the room, leaving everyone else to wait for what came next… Several moments later they returned, arms disfigured (wax) and dripping with (fake) blood). Each team then had to deal with each injury, by following the day’s lessons – an ‘interesting’ practical ending to a brilliant, eye-opening first aid day.