There has been delays in offering First Aid courses due to COVID-19 and we have been following Health & Safety Executive (HSE) guidance. The HSE has advised that all First Aid certificates will be extended. This only applies to certificates that were due to be renewed after 16 March 2020. In all cases, certificates that expired after 16 March 2020 remain valid until 31 October 2020 or 6 months from date of expiry, whichever is later. For example: If a qualification expired on 1 May 2020, they would have until 31st October 2020 to requalify, if a qualification expired on 20 July, they would have until 19 January 2021 to requalify.

We have therefore agreed with our current training provider, Falkirk Community Trust, that we will commence the 2 day First Aid at Work Refresher courses starting in late October. We want to firstly offer training to those employees whose certificates were due to finish in March and April 2020. We will then offer training to those employees who are working in buildings that are currently fully occupied e.g. schools and some Social Work buildings.

Business Support colleagues will be in contact with employees to inform them of dates for the 2 day First Aid at Work Refresher courses. We will not be offering any 3 day First Aid at Work or Emergency First Aid at Work courses until the backlog of 2 day First Aid at Work Refresher courses courses is dealt with.

Under the First Aid at Work Regulations an employer is required to provide a sufficient number of trained individuals to provide first aid in the workplace. The question of whether an individual can administer first aid without having a current certificate unfortunately doesn't discharge the Council of this duty. If an individual doesn't retrain or requalify they’re not considered competent to act as a first aider in the workplace.

Action required

The Premises Manager or relevant Service Manager should ensure that their First Aider is aware of the timescales above and the need to attend a training course before their certificate expires.

This would be a good opportunity to review your First Aid provision and ensure it is fit for purpose and meets the changing needs of the service.