Ever thought what you would do if you were first on the scene of a Road Traffic Accident or if a family member was taken ill. We hope it never happens but it is likely that at some point you will be confronted with a situation, where knowledge of First Aid will be useful.
It helps if you instinctively know what to do and are trained in the crucial skills to maintain life for a casualty in what are often the vital first few seconds and minutes of a real medical emergency. First Aid skills are therefore of immense value, not just for cadets when out on a remote expedition, but in the workplace or home. The National Press have covered a number of stories, where cadets from around the country have stepped in to save lives – using skills they have acquired through their first aid training.
First Aid is also a training requirement of other Air Cadet activities, for example The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Part of which requires the participants to be fully proficient for an expedition or exploration lasting from between two to five days (depending on level). This includes being able to deal with a potential incident and promote well-being at both individual and team level.
Courses may be delivered over a weekend or in separate stages on normal parade nights and progressive in nature.
A number of first aid qualifications may be provided by the squadron, or available at wing or regional level and may count toward the attainment of cadet classifications at First Class, Leading and Senior Cadet level.
Courses are assessed by a practical exam, where cadets usually have to deal with three situations: a conscious, breathing casualty; an unconscious, breathing casualty; and an unconscious non-breathing casualty, involving CPR on a Resusci Anne manequin.
Many Cadets first experience first aid at First Class level, where the ‘Heartstart’ course is normally available. This is a basic first aid course in Emergency Life Support, coordinated by the British Heart Foundation
Cadets will also normally have an opportunity to undertake a Youth First Aid Course. Numerous first aid topics are covered such as fainting, bleeding, head injuries and bites and stings. They are taught by qualified staff, often qualified to the level of First Aid at Work. Upon completion, cadets receive a red Youth First Aid badge for their uniform to mark their achievement as well as a certificate.