Health & Wellbeing

Start first aid training this week in Bega and Queanbeyan

Ian Campbell 9 June 2019
First Aid teacher Georgie McInerney offers life-saving skills to student Sandra Davis. Photo: Supplied.

First Aid teacher Georgie McInerney offers life-saving skills to student Sandra Davis. Photo: Supplied.

According to the Red Cross, Australia has one of the lowest rates in the world for first aid training, with less than five per cent of people trained in how to handle a medical emergency. This week there is an opportunity to turn that around for Southern NSW.

TAFE NSW is offering an industry-leading short course in first aid on Thursday, June 13 in Bega and Friday, June 14 in Queanbeyan.

The Statement of Attainment in Provide First Aid is an 18-hour course that equips participants with skills and knowledge to empower them to take control of an emergency situation.

About 500,000 Australians are hospitalised annually for injuries, with about 12,000 of those people losing their lives. Meanwhile, an average of 33,000 people suffer cardiac arrests in Australia each year with only five to seven per cent of victims surviving.

TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Nursing and First Aid, Cheryl Bradshaw, says first aid is something you hope you never need but you never know when you will need it.

“It’s an amazing feeling to help save someone’s life and having these skills stops you from feeling helpless when you’re confronted by an emergency.”

Ms Bradshaw says a first aid certificate is highly regarded by employers and was a prerequisite for some roles in industries like childcare, education, fitness and leisure, disability care, community services and health.

The TAFE NSW short course gives students the flexibility of eight hours pre-work online, followed by a day at your local TAFE NSW campus for practice and assessment. The interactive day equips students with skills in basic life support, casualty management, CPR and the use of a defibrillator.

“Anyone can do first aid, young and old; as long as you can physically get down on the floor, you can do it,” Ms Bradshaw says.

She says some past students had extraordinary stories to tell.

“A mum did the course recently and a few weeks later was at a family gathering and a small child fell into the pool.”

“She was able to apply what she learned and resuscitate the child and now she’s made her whole family complete the course at TAFE NSW.”

Safe Work Australia advises at least one in every 50 workers in an office environment and one in 25 workers in a higher risk environment, like a construction site, should have a first aid certificate.

To find out more phone 13 16 01 or visit the TAFE NSW website.

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