L I F E S T A R T

First Aid Industry Standards – It’s 2021. Welcome to Rant Part 2

Let’s talk standards. There are no standards out there today that specifically say: “Ok, here’s what you need for equipment and here are the areas instructors need to be proficient in.” There’s no outline that tells you what you should be doing or best practice for different components of your courses. There are no specifics on what should be done, or how training courses should progress through different levels of instruction.
 
Each national first aid provider DOES basically follow the same standards:
  • One instructor per 18 participants
  • Equipment ratio standards should be 1:2 or 1:3.
But wait! There’s no mention of what equipment should be used. For example, the archaic blue foam actors (ew) vs. the new Preston or Braden mannikins - there are huge differences between these. Newer mannikins with more interactive training features = a better learning experience = better retention = MORE LIVES SAVED. C’mon!
 
Consistency for training equipment along with quality control appears to be sorely lacking across Canada. As it stands right now, you can take training at 3 different locations, be given three different instructional standards and have equipment that ranges from the 1999 blue Actar mannikin to 2019 Brayden feedback mannikin. So, this means that every participant is not only being taught different standards (such as you do not give breaths anymore) to them thinking you can compress 2 inches with one hand while singing ‘Staying alive’.
 
Not only are participants having a completely different experiences, but they also feel confused that standards keep changing every year (which they don’t). All the inconsistencies = fear of doing something wrong which = doing almost nothing and results in lower survival rates. The training to save lives is actually doing more harm than good at this point.
 
As you can see, we’re really passionate about raising (and creating) standards. You haven’t heard the last of us on this topic. This is why this is only part one of our rant. Stay tuned for Part 2 & 3!
 
For your referencing pleasure:
https://www.redcross.ca/crc/documents/What-We-Do/First-Aid-and-CPR/final-report-first-aid-wa-02-15-2015-01-16.pdf  (2020 American Heart Association Guidelines: Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada Edition)