Covid-19 Update

In light of the latest government and industry advice on the Coronavirus (Covid-19) situation in relation to the easing of lockdown measures in England with level 3 on the Covid-19 alert scale 19 June, we are planning to resume first aid and health & safety training courses effective from 6 July, 2020 subject to the prevailing conditions at the time.

This situation is constantly changing and fast moving so British Red Cross Training advise you to visit this page on a regular basis for updates and any changes to our position.

Updated: Thursday 25 June

We will resume training from 6 July 2020

We will gradually resume training from this date in order to reflect demand from customers and using locations where we are able to establish the safeguarding measures necessary to protect our delegates and employees.

We will be adhering strictly to the advice of Public Health England, the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and the First Aid Quality Partnership

Please be aware that we're currently experiencing a high demand for training courses and we're doing our best to ensure that all of our customers are booked on the earliest possible training course available. However, sometimes this may not be possible, and we kindly ask you for your patience and understanding during the process.

How we'll ensure the health and safety of people on our courses

We will implement the following measures to keep learners and our employees safe:

  • We will ask anyone who is unwell with symptoms of Covid-19 to not attend the course.
  • The seating in our breakout areas and training rooms will be 2 metres apart to allow social distancing on the arrival and throughout the day. Learner numbers on courses have been reduced to permit this.
  • Whenever reasonably practical, social distancing will be maintained except where absolutely necessary for training and assessment purposes.
  • For sessions of training and assessment where it is necessary to come within 2 metres of other learners, related to a situation where a first aider may be expected to wear PPE in a real emergency, appropriate PPE will be provided.
  • Necessary small groups will be done within the same groups to minimise the number of people with whom delegates come into closer contact with.
  • We encourage regular use of hand washing facilities and provide alcohol-based hand sanitiser in each training room for regular use.
  • One manikin will be provided per learner. We have also significantly increased stocks of manikin faces and face shields with rigorous cleaning and sanitising procedures.
  • All equipment is cleaned regularly.

Where can you train?

We will initially be training at a set number of venues across England from 6 July and we plan to gradually increase the number of venues over the coming weeks and months to other parts of the country including Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland subject to government guidance and customer demand. Check this page and our website for updates.

This phased approach will allow us to ensure that the adaptations to our training delivery meets our customer's requirement, government and industry guidelines.

If you have booked training in July and training is not available at that venue, please email rctsales@redcross.org.uk or call 0344 871 8000 to arrange a transfer to a course in the future at your preferred location without additional charge.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and please be assured we are working towards having our normal schedule of training venues open as soon as possible.

What if you require training at your premises?

We will continue to undertake onsite training at your premises in line with current practice where we have trainer resources availability to do so and subject to your organisation being able to provide a risk assessment demonstrating additional required safeguarding, social distancing and infection control measures at your site.

Please send enquiries to rctsales@redcross.org.uk or call 0344 871 8000

Which courses will you be able to book?

To support businesses and employees returning to work and the requirements of key workers our initial focus will be on our normal schedule of workplace first aid and health and safety training, so the following courses will be available:

First aid at work (3 day)

Emergency first aid at work (1 day)

First aid at work requalification (2 day)

Paediatric first aid

Fire marshal training

How can I make a booking?

You can continue to make bookings in the normal way subject to course and venue availability.

Make a booking on our site https://www.redcrossfirstaidtraining.co.uk/where-we-train/course-search ; call 0344 871 8000 or email rctsales@redcross.org.uk

What if I've already made a booking and/or need to make a transfer?

We will be contacting customers who are already booked on courses during the coming weeks. If you need to contact us or haven't heard from us by the end of June, please email us on rctsales@redcross.org.uk

I have paid for a course which has now been cancelled. How and when will I receive a refund?

If you have paid for a course which has been cancelled as a result of Covid-19, you will receive a refund.

Card payments will be automatically returned to the card you paid with. Otherwise, we will contact you for your BACS details.

Due to a high volume of refunds, please be patient with us as we return your payment as quickly as possible.

What if my certificate is due to expire?

The HSE has updated its guidance on first aid at work certificates expiring on or after 16th March if your requalification training is prevented for reasons associated directly with Coronavirus or by complying with related government advice. It is now reasonable and practical that you may qualify for an extension. The final deadline for requalification is 30th September 2020.

To take advantage of this extension you need to:

  • Describe why you have not been able to requalify
  • Demonstrate what steps you have taken to access the training, if required.

To read the full statement, please follow this link >

As demand for these courses is high, we advise that you consider booking as soon as possible.

What are the main changes to how first aid skills will be taught

Courses will include information about how first aid can be performed safely during the current Covid-19 pandemic, following current guidance from Resuscitation Council (UK). Click here to read our blog, highlighting some of the additional first aid information that will be covered on first aid courses.

What can a first aider do to help during the Coronavirus outbreak?

If you have been trained in first aid you may be wondering how you can put your skills to use to support people in the community and whilst at work during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak. Find out more in our blog >

How to protect myself when performing first aid during the Coronavirus outbreak?

Providing first aid to someone who is unresponsive and not breathing is crucial in making sure that they have the best chance of recovery. However, it is also important that you take measures to protect yourself during the Covid-19 pandemic. In order to reduce the potential risk of infection when giving first aid, please follow the steps outlined on this page >

Do first aiders in the workplace need to wear anything other than gloves when attending to non-Coronavirus related injuries?

There is very little information available with regards to first aiders specifically, and what has been released has concentrated on helping someone who is unresponsive and not breathing.

In terms of general first aid advice, at the moment, the advice is to encourage people to help themselves where possible with us offering guidance on what to do. e.g can you put pressure on your wound by holding it firmly with your hand - this helps us to maintain social distancing.

It is more important than ever to wear gloves if easily available, follow hand washing guidance and be extra vigilant with how you dispose of waste. Much of this is covered in more detail along with updated guidance for CPR in our blog - What can a first aider do to help during coronavirus outbreak?

The only additional guidance would be treating someone who, is not displaying symptoms or any signs of Covid-19 but is in an environment where there is sustained transmission (i.e. care homes, block of flats, communities etc. where there is a high proportion of cases that appear to be spreading). In this instance the advice is for person providing care to wear an apron surgical mask in addition to gloves if they have to come within 2 metres - this however is an unusual position, and at present we aren't seeing if often, with the exception of some care homes.

As this is an ever changing situation up to date information from the Resuscitation Council UK can be found here >

Up to date information for first aiders and first responders from Public Health England can found here >

What to do about first aid cover during Coronavirus (Covid-19)

If first aid cover for your business is reduced because of Coronavirus or you can't get the first aid training you need, there are some things you can do so that you still comply with the law.

You should review your first aid needs assessment and decide if you can still provide the cover needed for the workers that are present and activities that they are doing.

Keep enough first aid cover
If there are fewer people coming into your workplace it may still be safe to operate with reduced first aid cover. You could also stop higher risk activities.

Share first aid cover with another business
You could share the first aiders of another business, but be sure that they have the knowledge, experience and availability to cover the first aid needs of your business.
Shared first aiders must:

  • be aware of the type of injuries or illnesses that you identified in your first aid needs assessment and have the training and skills to address them
  • know enough about your work environment and its first aid facilities
  • be able to get to the workplace in good time if needed

Whoever provided the temporary cover must make sure they do not adversely affect their own first aid cover.

What to do about interrupted first aid training due to Coronavirus (Covid-19)

The HSE has outlined some useful guidance to anyone that has experienced interruption to their first aid training due to the Coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown.
If because of Coronavirus you cannot complete training for your first aid qualification within the usual time frame, training can restart at a later date as long as:

  • a full recap of training delivered before the interruption is done before moving onto undelivered modules
  • the awarding body is content that you can show:
    a full understanding of all aspects of the course content
  • the knowledge required and competencies at the end of the training.

How else can I get practical first aid advice during this period?

We have a number of resources available to help refresh first aid skills without attending a classroom based course, including:

*Please be aware that our online First Aid Annual Skills update course is not certified, but it can help you refresh your first aid knowledge

How else can I help during this period?

If you have been trained in first aid you may be wondering how you can put your skills to use to support people in the community and whilst at work during the Covid-19 pandemic. Find out more in our blog >

Learn first aid so if you have an accident at home you can help your family and friends, potentially alleviating pressure on our busy health services. Our online first aid advice and first aid apps provide clear, easy to follow steps to help someone in a first aid emergency. Learning basic first aid skills can help to relieve symptoms and decide if you should go to hospital.

We are looking at ways our volunteers can make a difference during this time of uncertainty. If you think you may be able to help you can sign up to become a community reserve volunteer, which is a network of people ready to help safely in any way needed, from sharing public health messages to safely helping those who are the most vulnerable. Find out here how you can give help or get help during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Click here to download a PDF of this Q&A