25th Mar '20

Coronavirus and First Aid Qualifications Update

HSE EXTENSION TO THE VALIDITY OF FIRST AID QUALIFICATIONS 

The Health and Safety Executive have today announced that they will be offering a three-month extension to the validity of the following qualifications if the learner or Trainer/Assessor is unable to requalify because of the coronavirus: 

• First Aid at Work 

• Emergency First Aid at Work 

• Paediatric First Aid 

• Emergency Paediatric First Aid 

This means that a Trainer/Assessor can continue delivering regulated qualifications in first aid for up to three months past the expiry of their current FAW or Paediatric certificate. This is also the case for learners who may be covering first aid within a workplace holding any of the qualifications stated above. The HSE will keep this situation under close review over the coming months and will issue further statements as necessary. We will of course keep you informed with any updates and changes as soon as we hear them. 

If you have any questions or need any additional information then please do not hesitate to contact us. 

 

Please see below for the full HSE statement: 

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is aware that people holding Offshore Medic (OM), Offshore First Aid (OFA), First Aid at Work (FAW) or Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW) certificates nearing expiry date, might experience disruption to access to requalification training as a result of events or circumstances generated by the coronavirus pandemic.  

HSE's current guidance on the Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981: https://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/priced/l74.pdf and the Offshore Installations and Pipeline Works (First-Aid) Regulations 1989 https://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/priced/l123.pdf is that those holding an OM, OFA, FAW or EFAW qualification should undertake retraining before their original certificate expires and HSE strongly recommends that employers, and individuals holding those qualifications should plan for requalification training well in advance of expiry dates. 

If however requalification training is prevented for reasons associated directly with coronavirus or by complying with related government advice, it is reasonable and practical to extend the validity of current certificates by up to 3 months. Anyone taking advantage of this extension should be able to describe clearly their reasons for delaying requalification training, and demonstrate steps they have taken to undertake the training, if required.

This guidance comes into effect for certificates expiring on or after 16th March 2020. HSE will review this matter over the coming months and will issue further statements as necessary. 

The Department for Education supports the HSE statement regarding the extension of first aid certificates during coronavirus emergency and that it can be applied to paediatric first aid certificates held by staff in early years provision.