COVID-19 has forced the suspension of traditional first aid training classes to all Western Australians until health authorities can remove bans on group gatherings.
But that doesn’t remove the requirement for industry to meet occupational health and safety standards on essential first aid skills in their corporate office and on-site operations.
Recognising this critical responsibility in pre-hospital health care, St John WA has created an innovative solution for essential first aid targeted at the mining, industrial and corporate sectors, and fast-tracked plans for a 32-module app-based course, ideal for personnel working from home.
Demand has also increased from mining companies on St Georges Terrace to bring a trained St John first aider in-house while the company implements shift rosters to reduce staff numbers in the building.
St John Executive Director Health Services Phil Holman said the nationally accredited qualification is designed to meet the needs of professionals who provide emergency and first responder services as part of their workplace duties.
In addition to self-paced e-learning the qualification requires face-to-face scenario-based learning, traditionally conducted in larger groups with participants working in pairs to test their skills.
“We have been able to make some minor modifications to the course and classroom structure to continue to service our corporate clients and provide them with the critical training required to keep their operations, and their staff safe,” Mr Holman said.
“Class sizes will be reduced to allow four square metres per person, with life-sized mannequins removing the need for a human partner.
“The modified course will retain its accreditation and is now available in 10 centres across Perth.”
The first session was conducted at Rockingham for a tier-one mining company.
Feedback from the client said: “We had a number of emergency crew members who were due to renew their advanced resuscitation skills and we were very concerned about the potential of having to wait several weeks or months to get this training completed.
“We were very pleased that St John was able to take an agile and flexible approach to their training to allow the course to go ahead as planned without compromising safety or quality.”
The St John First Aid app had been in development for some time but fast-tracked to meet demand from both corporates and families for basic first aid, while working from home.
“The app allows self-paced e-learning for individuals that can be done in one sitting, or one module at a time,” Mr Holman said. “Completing a single 10-minute module will give you the CPR skills to save a life; completing the full course will ensure workers are equipped to respond in any emergency.”