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2 Jun. 2016 Posted by Dianne Rende in First Aid Training

The Panic Button

Everyone has a panic button. It is a natural protective internal system that causes us to react in life threatening situations. First aid situations can trigger a person’s panic button.


Did you hear about the paramedic that came upon the scene of a rescue in progress by a bystander who was performing CPR on an unconscious casualty? The bystander was doing chest compressions and “practice breathing” into the casualty. One would question why anyone would “practice breathe” in a real emergency scenario. Chest compressions alone would be more advantageous as they would not interrupt the flow of blood to the vital organs. However, if you understand the dynamics of the average person who is thrown into an “un-average” situation, the reasons become clearer.


Emergencies quite naturally induce the feeling of panic among those that are not highly trained or experienced. Panic can interfere with the thinking process causing the responder to revert to a more robotic mode which copies the movements learned in the first aid class. First Aid Instructors that do not want to clean and sanitize manikins or do not have enough manikins available for the whole class may tell their students not to breathe directly into them during training. Instead, they may tell them to, “practice breathe”, whereby the student simulates a breath to the side of the manikin face. Unfortunately, this training style does not provide the responder with the best opportunity of success in an emergency situation.


Another example of panic inducing responders into robotic mode occurred at a plant in Mississauga. An employee experienced a severe laceration on the hand that caused a significant amount of blood spillage. The trained responders bandaged the wound to stop the bleeding but did not take off the paper wrapping from the gauze bandage pads. The employees reported that in their first aid class they practiced bandaging using gauze pads that were still in their paper wrapping.

If you are booking first aid training for your employees, check to make sure your provider of choice will have enough manikins so that everyone in the class can practice the skills exactly as they would of a real situation occurs. Training kits with protective barriers and bandages should also be provided to each student so that practice is as realistic as possible, ensuring that even if the panic button is stimulated and robotic memory takes over, the end result will be as successful as possible

Dianne Rende is the Executive Director of St. John Ambulance, Peel Dufferin Branch. As Canada’s leading authority in first aid, St. John Ambulance is dedicated to improving health and safety at work, at home and at play. Dianne can be reached by email at [email protected] or for more information visit www.sja.ca.

29 Apr. 2014 Posted by Dianne Rende

Pet First Aid Saves Lives!

Meeka’s Story

Pet First Aid Instructor saves Meeka

Meeka Recovers at the Veterinary Hospital On Saturday, April 19th, 2014, St. John Ambulance Medical First Responders, Ryan Smith, Andrew Adams, Rachel De Young and Gabriel Baylon were on first aid duty at the All About Pets Show.  They heard a distressed women calling out for oxygen for her dog that had fallen off a chair and was vital signs absent.  Ryan, who is a certified Pet First Aid Instructor, took charge, assessed the situation and began mouth to snout ventilations.  Andrew, Rachel and Gabriel followed Ryan’s instructions regarding oxygen delivery, heart monitoring, chest compressions and bystander management. The team worked together to continue life support while transporting Meeka to a veterinary hospital for further treatment.  Meeka, a 4 year old teacup Pomeranian, survived the stroke that caused her near death experience due to the quick actions of these four dedicated Medical Responders who were able to adapt their first aid skills to save her life.

From left:  Andrew, Gabriel, Meeka’s owner,  Terry and Ryan Smith celebrate Meeka’s recovery.

 

First Aid is an important tool for taking care of the ones you love. Many of us have taken a first aid course at some point in our lives for family, school or work related reasons and we have learned some important skills.  Your animal companion is more to you than just a pet; they are a member of your family.

As such, have you considered how to recognize a potentially serious condition, and help them if they are injured?

Good first aid knowledge can help to save your pet’s life, reduce the potential for increased injury and promote fast recovery. First aid is not a replacement for going to your vet, but handling emergency situations properly right at the beginning can save you money by recognizing problems early and acting on them quickly.

Pet first aid courses are designed to build an owner’s confidence to respond to an illness or injury situation, administer the appropriate care, or stabilize and transport a pet to the veterinarian. A good course will include preventive care to avoid illness and injury, how to use common household items to restrain and transport an injured animal, and some or all of the following:

  • Pet proofing your home
  • Shock, unconsciousness, vomiting, dehydration and diarrhea
  • Animal fights and bites
  • Internal and external bleeding
  • Wounds and infections
  • Poisons
  • Artificial respiration and airway obstruction
  • Abdominal thrusts for choking
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
  • Administering medications
  • Parasites, insect bites and stings
  • Eye, ear and nose injuries
  • Injuries from heat and cold
  • Spinal, bone and joint injuries
  • Porcupine quills
  • Skunk sprays
  • Seizures
  • Delivering puppies or kittens

Attending a course in person allows for hands-on learning with life-sized specialty animal mannequins.  Along with practicing CPR and choking and bandaging, animal mannequins can be used to demonstrate how to adapt common household items such as jackets, sticks, newspaper, saran wrap, duct tape, over-the-counter drugs, old cell phones, ties, belts, rope, scarfs, etc. into first aid tools.

Finally, a good first aid course will provide you with a resource manual for handy reference and a specially designed pet first aid kit.

Consider the newly-developed St. John Ambulance Pet First Aid course. With everything included above, it will be the best six and a half hours you spend on learning how to keep your pet safe and healthy. Proceeds of St. John Ambulance Pet First Aid courses are directed to the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog Program, a charitable service that brings comfort, joy and companionship to members of the community who are sick, lonely, reside in long-term care and mental health facilities; are in hospitals, schools and library settings. For more information please call (905) 568-1905 or visit www.sjapeel.ca/petfirstaid

15 Oct. 2013 Posted by Dianne Rende

Have you ever considered having an employee trained to be a St. John Ambulance Instructor?

In our experience, the best first aid Instructors have background experience in first aid, healthcare and safety, but more importantly, they understand how to teach adults. I have hired many first aid Instructors who have been fire fighters, police officers, doctors, nurses and paramedics, but my most successful Instructors have always been adult educators. Adult educators do not try to put too much information into the first aid course, they don’t bring in too many “field stories” that have little relevance to the average first aider, and they know how to teach in terms the client will understand. The term, In-Plant Instructor, refers to a company employee who has been trained and certified to provide first aid training to their company’s employees. Many larger companies choose this option for convenience and economy. A company who has an employee, who already does training for them in other areas, may want to consider adding First Aid certification to their portfolio of courses they teach.

In the words of an In-Plant client…….

At VWR International, employee health and safety are paramount to our operation. The ability to maintain a safe working environment while maintaining budgetary demands is a perfect combination of associate and fiscal responsibility. Having an In-Plant St John Ambulance Instructor has allowed VWR to do just that. The In-Plant Instructor also works with our JHSC to ensure that all First Aid kits, First Aid rooms and our Automatic External Defibrillator are maintained, functional and in readiness should they be required. Training in Standard First Aid, CPR and AED at a greatly reduced price, on a schedule that meets the demand of our operation has allowed us to not only meet WSIB requirements, but to surpass them, ensuring a healthy and safe workplace. Al Blundell Logistics Manager- Canada VWR International

Benefits of In-Plant Training

First Aid, CPR and AED classes can be arranged at the convenience of the company and its employees. The times of the course, numbers in the class and the dates are entirely at your convenience and not subject to the restrictions of hiring outside independent contractors. Training is easily customized to the company's particular requirements and hazards.  First aid instruction can be provided to all employees in the company, increasing employee safety both at work and at home. Certification fees only apply to those that you are required to have certificates issued for.  Studies show that people trained in first aid have fewer injuries. Companies can benefit from the cost savings realized by having less employee down time due to injury.  First Aid training can be easily incorporated into new employee orientation programs.  Re-certifications are quick and easy to arrange, reducing the chance of overlooking employee certificate expiry dates.  Your Instructor can organize regular refresher workshops or lunch and learn sessions to keep employee knowledge and skills sharp. No fees apply for non-certificate training.  Your St. John Ambulance certified Instructor will be trained on the latest adult education techniques during their Instructor certification course. These skills are directly transferrable to other employee training programs.  Preferred client pricing on workplace first aid kits, supplies and AEDs.  Free first aid comprehensive assessments to help you meet your regulatory requirements.  Annual reports on employee certifications.  St. John Ambulance will be your partner in first aid, and will provide continuing education to your Instructor to ensure their skills are current.
3 Sep. 2013 Posted by Dianne Rende

Getting Work Experience Through Volunteerism

The Canada Survey on Giving, Volunteering and Participating 2010, reported that 47% of Canadians volunteer. Volunteers devoted 2.1 billion hours in 2010, equivalent to 1.1 million full time jobs or 8% of the full time jobs in Canada. According to TD Economics this is a contribution of around $50 billion. Undoubtedly, the contribution to the economy is significant. Many people in our country benefit from the invaluable work done by volunteers. But what is becoming more recognized, is how volunteer work contributes to a person’s professional development and ultimate career success. The Ministry of Education has recognized the valuable experiences that volunteer opportunities provide by including it as a graduating requirement for high school. Many in the corporate world have recognized the value of volunteer experience and have developed programs to encourage employees to get involved in their communities. For youth who are just starting out in the workforce, volunteering is a gateway for work experience on a resume and for workplace references. Volunteer work can also be very influential to youth who are exploring career paths, helping them to make better decisions on what careers they would like to pursue and perhaps those they would prefer to avoid. For very highly competitive career paths, volunteering in the field demonstrates to postsecondary educational institutions and potential employers that the candidate knows what they want based on experience. For those that are already in the workforce, volunteering can expand professional networks and business opportunities or provide an opportunity for leadership training and experience, enhancing a resume for future promotion. Volunteer work takes many forms, including the donation of intellectual expertise. Non-profits are overseen by a Board of Directors, consisting of business professionals from a variety of backgrounds, contributing to the success of the organization by sharing their knowledge, expertise, skills and decision making abilities. If you are looking to serve on a Board of Directors but there are no suitable positions available, don’t overlook Committee positions. Committees serve the non-profit and the Board and this is a great way to start to be ready when a Board position opens up. There are many career building volunteer opportunities available. Non-profits are always looking for new volunteers to help them deliver their services to the community. The best experiences will be with organizations whose values closely match your own. It is possible to have a disappointing experience, but don’t let it discourage you from trying another organization. Just like in a career search, you may have to try a few different opportunities before you find the right match for you. Submitted by Dianne Rende, Executive Director, St. John Ambulance Peel Region Branch. St. John Ambulance is a not-for-profit organization and Canada’s leading authority in first aid. St. John Ambulance has over 500 volunteers that provide over 45,000 hours of service in Peel and Dufferin County each year.
20 Aug. 2013 Posted by Dianne Rende

What should a first aid station contain?

St. John Ambulance is Canada’s leading authority in first aid and the preferred choice of employers for employee first aid training*. We receive many questions from employers looking to comply with Ontario First Aid Regulation 1101. Over the next few weeks, we will publish the answers to some of the questions that are asked most often. If you have any questions you would like us to respond to please send them to: [email protected] *Innovative Research Study, August 2011

First Aid Station shall contain:

    First aid box containing the items required
  • A notice board displaying
  • - Board’s poster known as Form 82 (In Case of Injury at Work) - Valid certificates of qualification of the trained workers on duty and, - An inspection card with spaces for recording the date of the most recent inspection of the first aid box and the signature of the person making the inspection.
  • First Aid Station shall be in charge of a worker who works in the immediate vicinity of the first aid station and who is qualified in first aid by the standards required in the regulation
  • First Aid station shall be so located as to be easily accessible for the prompt treatment of any worker at all times when work is in progress
  • First Aid boxes must be inspected no less than quarterly and mark the inspection card for each box with the date and the signature of the person making the inspection
  • Every employer shall keep a record of all circumstances respecting an accident as described by the injured worker, the date and time of its occurrence, the names of witnesses, the nature and exact location of the injuries to the worker and the date, time and nature of each first aid treatment given.

Workplaces with 1 to 5 employees in any one shift:

• Employer must provide and maintain a first aid station with a first aid box (St. John Ambulance - Ontario #1 Kit) containing at minimum: – Current edition of St. John Ambulance First Aid Manual – 1 card of safety pins; and dressings consisting of: • 12 adhesive dressings, individually wrapped • 4 sterile gauze pads, 3” square • 2 rolls of gauze bandage, 2” wide • 2 field dressings, 4” square or 2-4” sterile bandage compresses • 1 triangular bandage The employer shall ensure that the first aid station is at all times in the charge of a worker who, (A) Is the holder of a valid St. John Ambulance Emergency First Aid Certificate or its equivalent; and (B) Works in the immediate vicinity of the box

Workplaces with 6 to 15 employees in any one shift:

• Employer shall provide and maintain a first aid station with a first aid box (St. John Ambulance Ontario #2 kit) containing as a minimum: – A current edition of a St. John Ambulance First Aid Manual – 1 card of safety pins; and dressings consisting of: • 24 adhesive dressings, individually wrapped • 12 sterile gauze pads, 3” square • 4 rolls of gauze bandage, 2” wide • 4 sterile surgical pads, individually wrapped • 6 triangular bandages • 2 rolls of splint padding and 1 roll up splint The employer shall ensure that the first aid station is at all times in the charge of a worker who, (A) Is the holder of a valid St. John Ambulance Standard First Aid Certificate or its equivalent; and (B) Works in the immediate vicinity of the box

Workplaces with 16 to 200 employees in any one shift:

• Employer shall maintain a first aid station with a first aid box (St. John Ambulance - Ontario #3 Kit) that contains at minimum the items below as well as a stretcher and two blankets. - A current edition of a St. John Ambulance First Aid Manual - 24 safety pins - 1 basin, preferably stainless steel; and dressings consisting of: . 48 adhesive dressings, individually wrapped . 2 rolls of adhesive tape, 1 inch wide . 12 rolls of 1-inch gauze bandage, . 48 sterile gauze pads, 3” square . 8 rolls of gauze bandage, 2” wide . 8 rolls of gauze bandage, 4” wide . 6 sterile surgical pads, individually wrapped . 12 triangular bandages . Splints of assorted sizes . 2 rolls of splint padding The employer shall ensure that the first aid station is at all times in the charge of a worker who, (A) Is the holder of a valid St. John Ambulance Standard First Aid Certificate or its equivalent; and (B) Works in the immediate vicinity of the box

Workplaces with more than 200 employees in any one shift:

Employer must provide an equipped first aid room. First aid room requirements are more extensive than a first aid station. For the specifics, consult Section 11 of the regulation. The regulation provides a list of minimum standards and your circumstances may require more, especially if you are working with hazardous processes or if 911 access could be delayed due to distance considerations.

Resource documents

WSIB Regulation 1101 First Aid requirements First Aid Self Assessment
12 Aug. 2013 Posted by Dianne Rende

How does an employer determine the number of first aid stations in a workplace?

It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that employees can access first aid expertise and supplies quickly and easily to help minimize the effects of the injury and promote rapid recovery. When deciding on the number of first aid stations, you need to take into consideration the layout of the work area(s) and the time that it would take an employee to access first aid assistance. Considerations may include:
  • Number of floors in the building
  • Restricted access. Secured areas that are not open to all staff are additional work areas that will need their own first aid station and dedicated first aid responders.
  • Separation of work areas such as “office” and “warehouse” or “plant”.
  • Vehicles are separate “work areas” and should contain their own first aid kit.
We recommend using the “three minute rule” to assist in deciding how many stations are required and where they should be located. An employee should be able to access or provide first aid assistance within three minutes. In a worst case scenario, where a casualty is non-breathing, a response time greater than four minutes means the casualty will begin to sustain brain damage. The three minute rule allows for an additional minute of response time for extraordinary circumstances.

Resources

Click this link to download a copy of Ontario Regulation 1101 - First Aid Requirements For more information on first aid kits, and supplies go to www.shopfirstaid.ca St. John Ambulance is Canada’s leading authority in first aid and the preferred choice of employers for employee first aid training*. We receive many questions from employers looking to comply with Ontario First Aid Regulation 1101. Over the next few weeks, we will publish the answers to some of the questions that are asked most often. If you have any questions you would like us to respond to please send them to: [email protected] *Innovative Research Study, August 2011
2 Aug. 2013 Posted by Dianne Rende in News

What is the Key to Life?

Did you know that chewing ASA (Aspirin®) in the event of a heart attack can improve survival rates by as much as 25%? ASA (acetylsalicylic acid) works by inhibiting blood platelets from attaching to the blood clot causing the blockage, giving you more time to get emergency help. One ASA tablet or two low dose tablets is all it takes. Is ASA something you regularly carry with you? If you are like most people, you would find it challenging to get your hands on some ASA tablets in the event of a heart attack emergency. Thanks to Brett and Andrew Beaulieu, co-founders of Key to Life, we have an easy way to carry ASA with us at all times. Tragically, their motivation was the result of the death of their father, who at 48 years old, suffered a heart attack and passed away. No one at the scene understood that aspirin may have been able to help him. However, when a friend of their family had a heart attack on a golf course, ASA was provided to him and he did survive. Brett and Andrew went on a mission to educate people on the benefits of ASA in heart attack situations and they found a way to help people keep it handy. Key to Life is a simple screw cap container that has enough room to carry a couple of ASA tablets and it can be easily attached to a key chain. Key to Life products can be bought at participating St. John Ambulance locations in Ontario. For just $2.99 +hst it is an economical and simple item to carry that could potentially save a life. Purchase Key to Life today at WWW.SHOPFIRSTAID.CA ASA is not for everyone! Please note that not everyone can safely chew ASA tablets and that these containers are not child resistant. Although the amount of ASA they can carry would not seriously harm a child, the containers should not be left where young children could get hold of them. Do not use or provide ASA to anyone who has allergies to ASA or who has been told by a doctor not to take ASA. Do not administer ASA to an unconscious casualty.
30 Jul. 2013 Posted by Dianne Rende in First Aid Training

How many people should my company train in First Aid?

St. John Ambulance is Canada’s leading authority in first aid and the preferred choice of employers for employee first aid training*. We receive many questions from employers looking to comply with Ontario First Aid Regulation 1101. Over the next few weeks, we will publish the answers to some of the questions that are asked most often. If you have any questions you would like us to respond to please send them to: [email protected]

How many employees should we certify in First Aid?

Employers will often think that certifying one employee in First Aid & CPR will meet the requirements of Ontario First Aid Regulation 1101. There are a few situations where this may be true, but generally only when there is a one person work area such as a taxi or a truck driver. The regulation requires that there always be someone on duty in the work area with current first aid certification at all times that work is in operation. Regulatory authorities will not tell you how many employees to train in order to be in compliance. That is for the employer to determine based on their operations. If any of the following situations arises with the one first aid certified employee at a workplace where they are the only one with the training, the employer will be out of compliance: • Employee is on vacation, sick leave or is working from home or another location. • Employee only covers one shift cycle of multiple shift cycles • Employee is the injured employee needing assistance • Employee faints at the sight of blood or injury • Employee is not able to access all areas of the work operation due to restricted access controls It may take three, four, or more employees per shift, and per work area, trained in first aid in order to be in compliance with Regulation 1101. *Innovative Research Study, August 2011