As a general rule, all first aid qualifications are valid for 3 years, excepting for Automated External defibrillator (AED) courses and CPR (or BLS if you prefer) for health-care professionals - both of these courses need to be renewed annually. The main legislation which impacts workplaces is outlined below, however workplace policies and procedures may affect your workplace requirements in addition to that below:


Under the Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations of 1981 employers are required to provide "adequate and appropriate" equipment, facilities and personnel so that their employees can receive immediate attention if they are injured or taken ill at work. These Regulations apply to all workplaces (including those with less than five employees and to the self-employed).

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) website contains documentation on the regulations and answer some common questions.

Since October 2013 the HSE no longer provide any regulation on the services/training offered by first aid training providers in that they have stopped issuing training numbers or vetting the quality of training delivery. Employers are now expected to observe due diligence on their training providers, or to use a training provider who is registered with an Ofqual approved awarding organisation - which will undertake this due-diligence role for employers as part of their quality assurance procedures. With this in mind, we have become a centre registered with the Awarding Organisation Training Qualifications UK (TQUK). As a result, we offer a range of Ofqual regulated qualifications where the courses are on the RQF database - this includes Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW), First Aid at Work (FAW and FAWR), Emergency Paediatric First Aid and Paediatric First Aid.  Some specialist courses such as our Outdoor First Aid Course are not on the RQF system and cannot therefore be offered through TQUK - for these courses we continue to certificate through our in-house Awarding Organisation Pro-Active Medical Training (which formally held HSE Approval prior to the cessation of this in 2009). Due-diligence documentation is available on request from our office for any clients with a need for this. 

Underwood Training can help provide advice on what courses are suitable for your workplace. Contact us for more information or for a free assessment of need.


Schools and Nurseries

For nurseries and primary school settings - especially those with attached pre-school/nursery units, the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) legislation for children from ages birth to 5 years applies. The last update to the EYFS statutory guidance was updated in March 2017, and came into effect in April 2017. This requires a Paediatric First Aid trained member of staff to be present on site at all times that children within this age group are on site. In reality, a minimum of 2 such trained staff are required to cover for absences, and more for covering educational visits and before/after school activities for larger organisations.  This latest version of the statutory framework states that all newly qualified entrants to the early years workforce who have completed a level 2 and/or level 3 qualification on or after 30 June 2016 must also hold either the full Paediatric First Aid or the Emergency Paediatric First Aid certificate within 3 months of starting work in order to be included in the require staff:child ratios at level 2 or level 3 in an early years setting. 

On 1st September 2014 statutory guidance about the support that pupils with medical conditions should receive at school came into force - this statutory guidance is for:

  • governing bodies of maintained schools
  • proprietors of academies
  • management committees of pupil referral units

The guidance is based on good practice. It is also relevant for:

  • school staff
  • local health services
  • parents and carers
  • other education settings, e.g. independent schools, sixth-form colleges
  • others with an interest in supporting children with medical conditions such as:
    • anaphylaxis
    • asthma
    • cancer
    • diabetes
    • epilepsy
    • migraine
    • sickle cell anaemia
    • heart conditions

The legislation relating to Employers above also applies for the staff of the school/nursery, which means that there may also be a need for staff trained in Emergency First Aid at Work and/or First Aid at Work to cover the needs of staff depending on the size of the workplace and number of staff employed.

To assist schools with the support of Pupils with Medical conditions at school, we are able to deliver short modules covering the relevant medical conditions for the cohort of pupils at the time of the training, or shorter courses for key staff such as Lunchtime Supervisor First Aid to enable additional support for the first aiders within the school setting. The Outdoor First Aid course is particularly relevant for those staff undertaking Duke Of Edinburgh activities within secondary schools, for field-trips and for forest-school settings. Underwood Training is able to assist schools with a free needs analysis in terms of their first aid requirements. We are able to offer the core courses as open-courses for individuals to attend, or can come and deliver a course on site for a group of staff.


Child Minders

The Early Years Foundations Stage (EYFS) legislation for children from ages birth to 5 years as detailed above applies. Where a child-minder works with another, if children are left with each of the individual staff, then both of the staff must hold the Paediatric First Aid qualification. This qualification is valid for 3 years and must be kept in date if a registered child-minder.


Sports coaches

Most sports coaching qualifications issued by a national governing body require a current first aid certificate otherwise the coaching qualification is not valid.  The two main courses that are appropriate are our Aquatic First Aid (8-hours contact time) and Outdoor Incident Management First Aid (16-hours contact time), although for some coaching qualifications the EFAW or FAW courses are sufficient.  

For ML, BELA, SPA, CWA and mountain biking amongst other qualifications - the 16-hour Outdoor course is the one for you.

For BCU coaches - either the 8 or 16-hour course dependent on the level of coaching qualification held - see this guidance from the BCU. Note: as first aid certificates are valid for 3 years, if you are looking to increase the level of your coaching qualification, it may be prudent to go for the 16-hour first aid course over the 8-hour course.

For RYA coaches, a dual certificate that includes the 6-hour Ofqual EFAW qualification and either the 8-hour or 16-hour outdoor first aid qualification is required due to their current requirements - please ensure that you let us know at the point of booking if you hold an RYA coaching qualification.

Please check with us to see if our courses cover the requirements for your qualification if you are unsure of which course to book onto.

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