Tuesday April 29, 2008
Red Cross CEO Robert Tickner has welcomed a proposal from last weekend's 2020 Summit for all school children to receive first aid training.
But he has urged the Federal Government to take it one step further by aiming for one person per household trained in first aid by 2020.
Mr Tickner said Red Cross believed first aid training should be part of the school curriculum and compulsory for all learner drivers.
'First Aid is an undervalued skill in Australian society' he said.
'Simple first aid skills save lives; life threatening injuries could be prevented at the scene of accident and could save the government millions of dollars in health care costs.'
Red Cross is the largest first aid organisation in the world and has been at the forefront of promoting a safety culture for youth.
In Australia, Red Cross is publishing a book on emergency first aid for new drivers and will lobby the government to make first aid training compulsory for all new drivers.
There is solid medical evidence that 'pre-hospital deaths form injury are not inevitable and that at least some can be prevented by simple first aid measures'(British Medical Journal 1994).
'Basic first aid skills such as how to stop a bleed, unblock an airway and do CPR are essential first aid skills that are accessible at a small cost from Red Cross with profits going back to helping vulnerable people' Mr Tickner said.
'Let's aim for one person per household to be first aid trained by 2020 but start saving lives right now by signing up for a Red Cross First Aid course.'