Businesses should heed the British Heart Foundation’s warning that 10,000 people die needlessly in the UK every year because too few of us are trained in CPR.


Paul Lane, managing director of ABC Worksafe, who has seen lives saved as a direct result of workplace first aid, said investing in staff training was not only good for organisations, but good for the community.


“It’s not just about organisations meeting their responsibility to have trained first aiders on site and ticking that legal box,” said Paul.


“Equipping staff with the skills and confidence to take action when a colleague, family member or even a stranger in the street collapses contributes to morale, enhances people’s view of the organisation and, most importantly, it could ultimately be responsible for saving someone’s life.”


Paul, a former Ambulance medic who set up his own health and safety at work training company in 2010, said simple first aid still remained a mystery for many people but bosses could make a significant difference.

“It’s one of those things that as individuals, people often say ‘Oh, I’ve always meant to get trained in first aid, but I’ve never got around to it’. If more employers took the initiative to offer it to staff, there would be more life savers out there.


“People are often under the misconception that training is only offered by the organisations synonymous with first aid, but it’s actually widely available…there are a lot of options.”


In the UK, less than 10% of resuscitations outside of hospital are successful – and there are more than 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests every year.


One of them happened in front of staff at Viridor Waste Management Plant, near Arundel, who’d recently been offered work-based training.


“A member of the public collapsed, but fortunately the Viridor staff we’d trained in first aid only a few weeks previously did everything as we’d taught them and, in conjunction with help from the Ambulance Service, the person survived,” said Paul. “It really brought home to that company and the individuals involved the importance of first aid training…it could literally make a difference between life and death.”

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