Now we are safely back at Alert Level 1 and training is back to normal, it is time to look at the changes we made to first aid guidance during earlier stages of the COVID-19 response. 

Grace period for First Aid Refresher reverts to 3 months on 1 August 2020

On 25 March we extended the grace period for first aid certificates, from 3 months to 5 months, effective from that date.

We are now giving notice that the grace period will revert back to 3 months on 1 August 2020.

This means that anyone who was due to do a first aid refresher in the first half of 2020, and has not yet done so, should pay close attention to when their grace period will expire. So, if someone was due to do their refresher around the time of lockdown, they need to attend their refresher training in the near future.

CPR demonstrations – breath alternatives continue to 1 October 2020

It is important that learners understand that providing a combination of chest compressions and rescue breaths gives the best chance of survival to someone in cardiac arrest.

Because of COVID-19, on 19 March we moved to accept alternative means of assessing competence of rescue breaths where a learner is not happy to demonstrate breaths into the manikin, even with disposable masks and good hygiene practices.

This flexibility will remain in place for learners until 1 October 2020 at which time it will be reviewed.