Businesses and organisations are being encouraged to train their staff in First Aid through a new initiative by the British Red Cross.
In order to increase the number of people at work with first aid knowledge, the British Red Cross has reduced the costs of its in house training courses.
Amanda Jenkins of the British Red Cross, which trains more than 120,000 people per year on its courses explained: "We want more people to be trained in first aid because they can save lives and reduce the enormous effect of injuries.
"Hundreds of thousands of people are taken seriously ill at work each year through cardiac arrests, epileptic fits, asthma attacks, blackouts and other non-work related illnesses. In addition, around six million working days are lost each year through work-related, reportable injuries with the average number of working days lost per injury increasing by 3% since 1997/8 to 14.5 days. These cost UK organisations a massive £5 - £8 billion a year in lost work.
"First aiders play a vital role in reducing injuries and saving lives both at work and outside A recent poll of first aiders by the British Red Cross, showed that 51% stated they had used the skills they had gained through their workplace in a non-work environment. That is why we want to encourage more organisations to train their staff."
Amanda Jenkins adds that the training usually has further benefits.
"Employers are also likely to find that first aid training helps to improve the overall performance of staff who attend courses. A recent British Red Cross survey found that 97% of the HSE qualified first aiders questioned felt more confident as a result of the training they had received, both personally and professionally. In addition, the vast majority claimed to feel more valuable to their employer.
Amanda Jenkins adds: "By providing an in house first aid training service where trainers go into the work place to train groups of 6 or more, we are enabling businesses to receive full first aid training from the comfort of their office without the inconvenience and expense of taking staff away their place of work."
To help with larger groups or organisations operating on several sites, the British Red Cross offers a special key account service to make administration easier.
For further details on the in house first aid training courses provided by The British Red Cross please log onto http://www.redcross.org.uk/faw
For a full copy of the survey please contact Lydia Mottershead on 0844 871 8000
For further information contact Lydia Mottershead on 0844 871 8000