On Saturday the 23rd of March 11 teachers from the SKOS – early childhood stimulation – participated in the Emergency First Response course: ‘Care for Children’. This course is dedicated to those of us that work with children and infants, or take care of them – either parents, family members, nannies or other caretakers. There are different techniques for medical emergencies when it comes to children and infants – they’re not just small adults!
We started the day with discussing the differences between adults, children and infants. It’s not only their smaller size, but also their age, natural curiosity and limited judgement that might bring them in situations that adults normally avoid. Children and infants require a different approach and also the techniques that you use to help them in medical emergencies are not the same as with adults.
In Primary Care we look at the life threatening emergencies: how do you recognise them, and what can you do? We practised primary assessment for adults at first and then we moved on to children and infants. The same was done for CPR – Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation, a combination of chest compressions and rescue breaths in case of cardiac arrest. We practised CPR on our adult manikins John and Bob, and then we took out Jimmy, our infant manikin. Participants used the different techniques for chest compressions depending on the victim – either you use both hands for chest compressions, or only one hand. With infants, you use either 2 fingers or your thumbs to do the chest compressions. Everyone tried the different ways to do CPR on the different manikins. All our manikins are equipped with CPR monitoring – like this, participants can see right away if their compressions and rescue breaths are done the way it should be done.Airway obstruction or choking is also a life threatening emergency that children, especially toddlers, are more likely to get then adults. You need a different way to help them when this happens – same principle, but different technique. This is also the case for choking infants. Other (potentially) life threatening emergencies we talked about were serious bleeding, spinal injury and shock. We practised and discussed how to do a log roll and the recovery position for the different age groups. Like in other Emergency First Response courses, it was emphasized how important it is to assess the scene of an emergency and to protect yourself from bloodborne pathogens by using barriers – maybe not necessarily to protect yourself but to protect the child or infant you’re helping..
During Secondary Care we looked at the not-immediately life threatening emergencies. What can you do for a child or infant with an injury or illness that needs First Aid – eventually while waiting for EMS personnel to arrive. We talked about how to do an injury assessment with a child, and what can you do to help them to prevent further harm and to ease their pain. Different bandages for different injuries were practiced, and also the triangular bandage was part of the skills. Illness assessment was discussed as well – a different approach with children as with adults. Another interesting subject we talked about was prevention of illnessess and injuries in the different surroundings where children come – at home, at school, around traffic, at play and around water. Very interesting to hear the different opinions and actions people take to ensure safety for the children. But at SKOS they’ve got it covered!
Test & Certifications
When all theory and skills were covered it was time for the teachers to sit down and make the multiple choice test on ‘Care for Children’. Without great difficulties all the teachers passed the test – the missed questions were discussed and explained where needed.It was great working with this group of teachers – and also a lot of fun! Everyone received a wall certificate – the official certification cards will follow in about 2 weeks. These certification cards will be valid for 2 years, and are acknowledged worldwide.