HSE changes in first aid
Following a review of the Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) made a number of key changes that may affect first aid training requirements within the workplace. The changes took effect on October 1st 2009.
Please note that businesses in Northern Ireland should read our guidance on the Health and Safety NI legislative changes which took effect from 1st September 2011.
The first aid at work four day course will become a three-day course: The First Aid at Work (FAW) course will now be completed over three days instead of four. Modern teaching methods and revision of some first aid protocol means that this training can be more streamlined but it still as comprehensive as before. The British Red Cross has updated their First Aid at Work course in line with the new guidelines. Our courses will focus on hands on 'recognise and treat' scenarios, so that first aiders feel more confident and experienced. In Northern Ireland first aiders will continue to train on the four day First Aid at Work course.
A new emergency first aid at work (EFAW) course: The HSE has introduced a new, one-day Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW) course. Suitable for SMEs and low risk working environments, this new course will allow the attendee to gain a basic HSE accreditation and certificate in first aid. Although it is not as comprehensive as the three-day FAW course, those trained will be recognised by the HSE as workplace first aiders.
Employers are advised to carry out a risk assessment: As the guidelines have been updated, the number of first aiders and category of training you need may have changed. It is recommended that employers conduct a new risk assessment so that they select the most appropriate course and number of first aiders for their business. This involves consideration of a number of factors including hazards and risks in your workplace, number of employees, accident history, lone workers and distribution of workforce. Using these HSE recommendations, we have created an online first aid course calculator to help find the right course for you, quickly and easily. Also, below is a table of the new HSE recommendations for first aid:
If you hold a current qualification, this will remain valid until the expiry date shown on your certificate .
Can I book a course?
The Red Cross has adapted its course schedule to maintain the appropriate, high standards for first aid training. As an approved HSE training provider, UK organisations can rest assured that their first aid training requirements will be fulfilled with the Red Cross. For more information, please visit our HSE changes FAQ page. As the guidelines have changed, it is now a great opportunity for organisations to ensure they are complying with the law. If you are unsure, you can always contact us.
Red Cross training has scheduled course dates for all of the new courses. Courses can be booked online or by calling 0844 871 8000.