What agency is responsible to enforce the legal obligations for employers to have first aid trained staff:
The Health and Safety Authority (HSA):
When do the First Aid Response requirements come into effect?
The HSA has announced that from September 1st 2017 it will only recognise the PHECC First Aid Response Education and Training Standard (FAR) as meeting the needs of occupational first aid (OFA) in all workplaces.
Who sets the standard that the HSA enforces?
PHECC: (Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council). PHECC is an independent statutory body who set the standards for education and training for pre-hospital emergency care in Ireland.
What course must employees take to fulfil the legal requirement?
First Aid Response (FAR): FAR is PHECC’s newest education and training standard. It’s a foundation first aid course that trains course participants to provide first aid for a person who becomes suddenly unwell or injured until the arrival of emergency medical services. FAR includes the full Cardiac First Response Community standard also.
What are the transition arrangements for people who recently have taken the old course (Occupational First Aid – OFA), not yet up for renewal?
The HSA will recognise training and assessment relating to QQI’s Level 5 OFA that took place up to 31 August 2017. That recognition will be for a 2 year period.
(Note: It is possible that the QQI component certificate which learners receive could be dated post 31 August 2017 e.g. October or December 2017, it is important that learners are aware the last day of the previous course is the date that is used for refresher training, not the date on the QQI certificate).
OFA Refresher certificates issued by recognised training providers up to 31 August 2017 will also be recognised by the HSA for a 2 year period.
If I have taken the old OFA course, which Refresher training course do I take?
Occupational First Aiders can still attend the 1-Day Occupational First Aid Refresher Course once they are within the permitted time-frame until 31st August 2017.
Beyond 31st of August 2017 existing Occupational First Aiders will have to attend the First Aid Response Refresher course, existing certificates must be within the 2 year limit (no grace period).
What are my options if my training certificate has expired and I have not yet taken the refresher training course?
Learners have a 90-day grace period from the expiry date on their training certificate (last day of training (not the date on QQI certificate) to attend the 1-Day Occupational First Aid Refresher course – up to 31st August 2017. If learners exceed this period then they must attend the full First Aid Response course.
What if I have just recently completed or are currently attending a QQI Level 5 Occupational First Aid Course?
The HSA will recognise training and assessment relating to QQI’s Level 5 OFA that took place up to 31 August 2017. That recognition will be for a 2 year period. Refresher certificates issued by recognised training providers up to 31 August 2017 will also be recognised by the HSA for a 2 year period.
I am an OFA Instructor and would like to continue providing first aid training, what are my options?
Existing OFA instructors on the OFAAA register prior to 31st October 2016 can continue for the present (until 31 August 2017) to deliver QQI OFA training during the transition to PHECC FAR.
Instructors wishing to deliver training of the FAR course have to make the transition from OFA instructors to FAR Instructors by recognition of prior learning (RPL).
Only certified FAR Instructors shall delver the FAR course on behalf of CMSE.
Click here to view the Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) Courses landing page