This site is intended for health professionals only

First aid should be on curriculum

First aid education should have been included in England's updated school curriculum, a charity has claimed. 

The curriculum, which was published earlier this week, fails to make any mention of first aid, the British Red Cross has complained. 

The UK is behind most European countries in terms of the number of young people trained in first aid, with only 20% of secondary school students having learned it in the classroom. 

Of that group, only 4% would help someone needing first aid assistance. 

British Red Cross head of policy Johnathan Ellis said: “We all know that emergencies can happen anywhere, but only seven per cent of people in the UK can correctly recall first aid advice and feel confident and willing to give first aid. 

“So, simple skills learned in just a few minutes - like what do if someone becomes unconscious - can save lives.” 

Yet the research also showed that 91% of students would like to learn first aid at school. 

The new curriculum will involve five-year olds tackling fractions and computer algorithms, Education Secretary Michael Gove announced yesterday. 

He said: “These changes will reinforce our drive to raise standards in our schools.

“They will ensure that the new national curriculum provides a rigorous basis for teaching, provides a benchmark for all schools to improve their performance, and gives children and parents a better guarantee that every student will acquire the knowledge to succeed in the modern world.”