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First aid in Childcare: Knowing the Legal Obligations for Brisbane Childcare Services

Updated: Aug 10, 2023

Childcare is a fascinating and rewarding profession, but it does come with a multitude of responsibilities, not least of which is understanding first aid obligations. If you're in Brisbane, consider enrolling in first aid courses Brisbane to meet the obligatory requirements. Let's delve into how a childcare service can meet these essential prerequisites.


Did you know?

  • In Australia, around 140,000 children are hospitalised due to unintentional injuries each year [1].

  • Only 1 in 5 childcare centres in Australia have all staff trained in first aid [2].

  • Around 60% of parents do not know the correct first aid procedures for burns and scalds [3].

  • In Queensland, it is a legal requirement for at least one staff member with a current first aid certificate to be present in a childcare setting at all times [4].


First aid courses Brisbane at a childcare centre
Brisbane childcare centre staff enjoy first aid training onsite with First Aid Brisbane.

How many Childcare staff members must be first aid trained?


Firstly, it's vital to ensure that at least one staff member has a current, approved first aid qualification (See ACECQA guidelines).


This requirement includes:

  1. Current approved first aid qualification.

  2. Current approved anaphylaxis management training.

  3. Current approved emergency asthma management training.

Currently, the unit of competency that covers all three of these requirements is HLTAID012 Provider First Aid in an Education and Care Setting, which First Aid Brisbane run weekly at all venues and for onsite groups.


This trained individual must be present at the childcare service at all times and must be available to provide immediate first aid assistance when necessary.

"In Australia, all childcare services are required to have at least one staff member with a current approved first aid qualification on duty at all times."

However, there is a growing number of early education and care providers that mandate all staff be formally and adequately trained.


This not only ensures that the minimum requirements are met and exceeded, but makes staff rostering easy and ensures all staff are ready and quipped to respond to first aid emergencies without unnecessary delay.


Finally, ACECQA also state the industry standard for renewal of first aid qualifications, anaphylaxis management training and emergency asthma management training, is every three years, and refresher training in CPR should be undertaken annually.


Childcare worker practicing asthma first aid.


Maintaining adequate first aid supplies, policies and protocols


As someone responsible for children's safety and wellbeing in a childcare setting, it's crucial you understand the importance of maintaining adequate first aid supplies, policies, and protocols. Not only is it a legal obligation, but it's also a crucial part of keeping the children in your care safe.


First Aid Supplies


Every childcare facility in Brisbane, and indeed across Australia, is legally required to have a well-stocked and easily accessible first aid kit on site. The first aid kit should contain all the necessary items to treat minor injuries and stabilise more serious ones until professional help arrives. This includes bandages, sterile dressings, antiseptic wipes, adhesive plasters, a digital thermometer, scissors, tweezers, and more.


First Aid Policies


Aside from having the right supplies, you must also have clear first aid policies in place. These policies should outline the procedures to follow when a child is injured or falls ill. It should include details such as who is responsible for administering first aid, when to call for medical help, how to record incidents, and what steps to take in case of serious emergencies. The policies should be regularly reviewed and updated to ensure they are in line with the best practices and current legislation.


First Aid Protocols


Simply having a first aid kit and policies isn’t enough. You also need to know how to use them correctly - this is where first aid protocols come into play. First aid protocols provide step-by-step instructions for dealing with various types of injuries and illnesses. They are designed to guide you through the process of providing first aid, ensuring you don't miss any crucial steps.


Remember, the safety and wellbeing of the children in your care is always paramount. By maintaining adequate first aid supplies, policies, and protocols, you're taking a huge step towards ensuring their safety.


Child injured in need of first aid treatment.


Implementing a Robust First Aid Training Program


First aid knowledge is an essential skill set in any childcare setting. It's not just about having a first aid kit; it's about knowing how to use it effectively and efficiently in the face of a medical emergency. However, it's not always straightforward. The key is to design and implement a robust first aid training programme tailored to the needs of your childcare setting. Here are some crucial steps to consider.


Identify Your Training Needs


The first step in implementing a robust first aid training program is identifying your training needs. Consider the age of the children you care for, the size of your setting, and the type of activities the children engage in. These factors will help you determine the type of first aid training your staff needs.


Choose a Reputable Training Provider


When it comes to first aid courses, Brisbane has a wealth of options. However, you need to ensure that the training provider you choose aligns with your identified needs and is reputable. Look for a provider that offers hands-on training, has knowledgeable and experienced trainers, and is well-reviewed by past clients.


Make Training Regular and Mandatory


First aid training should never be a one-off event. Ensure that all staff members undergo regular training to keep their skills up-to-date. This should be mandatory and scheduled at regular intervals, such as annually.


Develop a First Aid Policy and Procedure


It's important to have a written first aid policy and procedure in place. This should include details of the first aid training, the responsibilities of staff, how to respond in an emergency, and how to use the first aid kit. This will ensure everyone is on the same page and knows what to do in an emergency.


Implementing a robust first aid training program in a childcare setting is an important legal obligation. It ensures the safety of the children and gives staff the confidence to act swiftly and effectively in an emergency. Ensuring your team is well-trained in first aid not only meets this requirement but also enhances the overall quality of care you provide.


Invest the time to research and enrol in one of the quality childcare first aid courses Brisbane offers, and create a safer environment for the children in your care.


 

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