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First Aid Qualifications: Development Spotlight

Welcome to the first edition of Development Spotlight, a new feature in which we take a look at an upcoming qualification or qualification suite and provide details on what’s involved, who it’s suited to and when it’s expected to be available. This edition we will take a look at First Aid.

The IQ Level 2 Award in Emergency First Aid at Work and the IQ Level 3 Award in First Aid at Work have both just been accredited and will enable centres to offer these highly sought after qualifications, which are essential for workplace compliance.

The Level 2 Award in Emergency First Aid is a one day course with a single unit, Emergency First Aid in the Workplace, focusing on immediate response. Candidates must prove they can accurately assess an incident, manage unresponsive casualties, correctly apply CPR and be aware of the varying treatments for electric shocks, external bleeding and choking, alongside more minor injuries. Some time is also spent on injury prevention, such as minimising risks in the workplace and ensuring the correct first aid equipment is available.

The Level 3 Award in First Aid at Work meanwhile, is a three day course, which includes Emergency First Aid in the Workplace but builds on the material with an additional unit, Recognition and Management of Illness and Injury in the Workplace. Here the additional learning time is devoted to covering a wider range of injuries and going over them in greater detail, such as recognising fractures and dislocations or treating eye injuries. Heart attacks, strokes and seizures are also covered separately, giving the first aider confidence to accurately diagnose the illness they are faced with and apply the correct treatment.

After completing the awards, the first aider will be approved for a period of three years and must then complete the desired award again in order for them to remain compliant, ensuring that first aiders remain up to date with the latest techniques and practices, whilst also keeping their training fresh in the event that they have to use it.

IQ’s accreditation for these awards comes after the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) announced in June that from 6th April 2013 they will no longer be responsible for approving first-aid training and qualifications. These QCF qualifications are designed to allow awarding organisations to fulfil this role instead and IQ are delighted to have had the full support of both Skills for Health (the Sector Skills Council) and the HSE in deciding to offer these awards.

We anticipate demand for these new qualifications to be very high, given the compliance role they fulfil in helping workplaces to meet the requirements of The Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981 and their need for renewal every 3 years. If you are interested in offering either of these awards then you will need to first become an IQ centre. Existing centres can get in touch at any point and we can add these awards to your approved qualifications.

Both awards will be available to offer from the 1st March 2013.