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"Paul’s work on the international curriculum over 10 years ensured that Sefton was in the vanguard nationally in developing staff and student exchanges and study visits. His language skills were paramount in this as the department and Sefton schools expanded their links to include many countries in Europe and the world."
Bryn Marsh, Director, Children, Schools and Familes, Sefton Council, April 2005

First Aid PDF
Wednesday, 13 October 2010 00:00

Would you know what to do in a medical emergency? In a road accident, for example, or if your partner collapsed with a suspected heart attack? What about strokes, electrocution, arterial bleeding, drowning, falls, epileptic fits, choking, burns or scalding, snake or insect bites, broken bones?  All things that could happen at any time.

Well, I and 13 others just found out what to do. Yesterday 14 of us gathered at the El Gecko Hotel in Estación de Cortes de la Frontera for a day’s First Aid Training.  Lynda Pudney, RGN, a First Aid trainer of many years’ experience, led this motley crew through an intensive day’s training.

An appropriate mix of medical theory, interaction and practical application, I at least feel that now I’d know what to do if any of the above incidents occurred and I was there – and I’ve got a certificate valid for three years to prove it!

What to do?

If you are the only first aider present, first of all nominate someone to ring the emergency services (112) and confirm to you when they’ve done it. Then, using the acronym D-R-A-B, you need to assess and clear the Danger, eg from other traffic, live electric power, etc then don gloves to protect yourself from the risk of HIV/AIDS in the case of leaking body fluids.

Secondly, check for a RESPONSE from the patient(s), by speaking to them positively, tapping their chest, pulling their earlobes and touching their eyes. 

If there is no response, check the AIRWAY, by gripping the forehead with one hand and, with three fingers under the chin and your thumb on top, opening the mouth.  This will automatically clear the tongue from the airway. Remove any obvious obstructions, such as seaweed, loose dentures. 

Finally check for BREATHING, by placing one hand on the diaphragm and putting your head close to the ear, mouth and nose area.  If they are not breathing you need to do 30 chest compressions (to the rhythm of “Nellie the Elephant”) followed by two breaths into the mouth with four seconds between. 

Repeat until HELP arrives, you become EXHAUSTED from the chest compressions or the patient RECOVERS, represented by another acronym: H-E-R.

Chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation are difficult procedures to describe in words – so get enrolled on a First Aid course pronto.

And remember First Aid is just that - immediate, temporary assistance until professional medical help arrives.

Lynda Pudney can be contacted by email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or telephone on +44 7801 580060. Currently based in the UK, Lynda and her husband will shortly be emigrating to Andalucía.

©  Paul Whitelock

See also:

A1 SpanishLife: Health

Tags: First Aid, medical emergency, road accident, heart attack, strokes, electrocution, arterial bleeding, drowning, falls, epileptic fits, choking, burns, scalding, snake, insect bites, broken bones, El Gecko Hotel, Estación de Cortes de la Frontera, First Aid Training, Lynda Pudney, emergency services, HIV/AIDS, chest compressions, mouth-to-mouth, resuscitation, Paul Whitelock,


Paul Whitelock

Paul is a Joint Honours graduate in Spanish and German, a qualified teacher (PGCE) and has a Member of the Institute of Linguists (MIL) qualification.

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