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Return of First Aid Training - Statement 10 June 2020

Protocol for REC Courses under Covid-19 Regulations

Current Situation:

Rescue Emergency Care (REC) is adhering to Government guidelines with regard to resuming face-to-face training.  As this is a changing situation, especially between each of the 4 nations, this protocol will change in accordance with the threat level each nation is at.

REC is anticipating restarting first aid training under strict Covid-19 regulations as from July 2020 in England.  The start date for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will depend on the decisions of the devolved governments as to when it is considered safe to do so.

Where the need for first aid training is deemed to be "essential" training, then requests can be made to REC to run a course.  All trainers must carry out a full risk assessment and submit to REC for approval before the course will be allowed to take place.

REC Courses:

  • All first aid certificates can be extended to September 2020 in line with guidelines from HSE GB and HSE NI.
  • Courses may include partial online learning, as approved by HSE, but this will depend on the circumstances of venue, technology and time factor.
  • Courses still require to be completed within a 3 month period.
  • Courses will not have the same practical elements as normal owing to the physical distancing requirements.  However, all topics will be covered and REC trainers will look at inventive ways of delivering training until we can return to more normal circumstances.
  • All areas of first aid training must still be assessed.  

REC Trainers will be required to implement the following measures:

1. Ensure that the venue is suitable:

  • For access (entry and exit)
  • Space (2m between candidates + additional space for trainer to walk between candidates for assessment purposes)
  • Toilets
  • Refreshments (where and how)
  • Cleaning regime of venue

2. Safety of candidates:

  • Hygiene - hand sanitizer, masks, gloves if considered necessary
  • Equipment - enough for single use only
  • Declaration of Covid-19 symptoms prior to, during or within 14 days after the course by candidates to trainer
  • Temperature checks before entering the venue for candidates and Trainer
  • Class sizes reduced accordingly - this will depend on size of venue and scope for adhering to Covid-19 safety guidelines
  • Track and trace system in place for candidates and trainer for 14 days from end of course
  • All refreshments to be supplied by individual candidates including crockery and cutlery

3. Cleaning regime of equipment:

  • Before
  • During
  • After

4. Action to be taken if a candidate develops suspected Covid-19 symptoms during course:

  • Send all candidates home
  • Inform venue of suspected Covid-19 infection in building
  • Advise candidate with symptoms to get immediate Covid-19 test
  • All candidates and trainer to self-isolate in relation to government guidelines at the time
  • Deep cleaning of all equipment used on course

REC Covid 19 statement 15th May 2020

With the ongoing situation with regard to the Coronavirus, it is imperative that we adhere to the government, HSE and Resuscitation Council guidelines. Therefore, all face to face first aid training courses remain suspended.

Greater clarity is expected from HSE and industry bodies over the coming week as to when (and how) we may be able to return to delivery.

REC trainers will be ready to set up courses again as the Coronavirus situation has resolved and it is safe to do so. REC will update this statement as information and formal guidance from HSE becomes available.


All Courses Suspended

With the ongoing and escalating situation with regard to the Coronavirus, it is imperative that we all stay at home and adhere to the government guidelines. Therefore, all first aid training courses have been suspended.

REC trainers will be ready to set up courses again once the Coronavirus situation has resolved and it is safe to do so.


All Certificates Extended by 3 months

Following HSE announcement that EFAW and FAW certificates can be extended by three months, and OFQUAL statement that Paediatric First Aid certificates may be extended by three months, during coronavirus. All Rescue Emergency Care First Aid certificates will be extended by three months for certificates that expire on or after 16th March 2020. This will be kept under review, and REC will follow HSE lead on any further extension. You should be aware that this might not be acceptable to your employer or NGB, and check their requirements.

British Canoeing have online e-learning that is required for their purposes:


Our current understanding is that Mountain Training will accept certificate extensions from the issuing "authority".


HSE statement is at:

Further statement from HSE on 25 5 2020.  Certificate extension to 30 September 2020 for England.  Under review for Scotland and Wales.


Other NGB advice & requirements may be added here as we become aware of them.

Updates will be added here as the situation changes.