In the realm of first aid, knowing the right type of help to provide is invaluable. Meet Lisa, a first aid trainer whose recent act of compassion transcends the boundaries of her profession.
In a heart-pounding moment, she found herself not in the training room, but in her neighbour’s backyard. Here her actions made the difference between calm and panic, potentially adverting a compounding tragedy.
With a calm demeanour and the skills honed through years of first aid knowledge and training, Lisa stepped into action, providing comfort and support to a child during an emergency.
I had an incident some years ago at my neighbour’s house. There was a family gathering and BBQ, based on the noise level coming from next door. There was some screaming, which I dismissed as children playing.
Minutes later, an ambulance pulled up outside. I raced over to see if I could help. All the relatives were gathered around a two-year-old on the floor.
He was having seizures.
Whilst the ambos, grandma, parents, aunties, uncles and friends were doing their bit, I noticed the older brother (then 8 years old) standing alone at the bottom of the garden.
He was crying hysterically.
He did not understand what was happening and unfortunately, had witnessed his grandfather taken by ambulance two weeks earlier, and he did not return (died). He thought he was never going to see his little brother again.
I comforted him, explained what the ambos were doing and that he was going to hospital to be looked after by doctors.
At the time, I did not know what was wrong with the two year old, but was able to calm the older brother.
First aid is not just about bandaging.
Sometimes, the simplest of actions can be what is required.
The following day, I found out it was infantile convulsions from tonsillitis.
The family thanked me for looking after him (the older brother) as they had no idea he was so stressed at the time. He said "that nice lady next door told me what the ambos were doing and gave me a hug'.
Lisa’s story highlights a number of important aspects of first aid.
The first is that you never know when or where your knowledge may be needed. Not all incidences that require first aid involve horrific car crashes or heart attacks. This family were simply enjoying a gathering in their own home, and yet tragedy struck their two-year-old.
Lisa, with her wealth of knowledge and experience in first aid, rushed to provide whatever assistance she could, even though she didn’t know what had happened. She knew that no matter what was unfolding, her skills would be useful. She wouldn’t be another helpless bystander in an emergency.
The second is that the emotional and mental aspects of a crisis are just as important as the physical. Noticing that the medical emergency was under control by paramedics, Lisa looked around to see where else she could provide assistance.
While the rest of the adults were focussed on the child who was being cared for by the paramedics, Lisa saw the sibling. She saw him standing alone, crying hysterically, in the grips of true panic.
Her first aid training coupled with her compassion spurred her to comfort this young boy in a way that no one else had thought to in that moment. By doing so, she not only left a lasting impact of kindness on this young boy, but potentially averted the boy becoming a medical emergency in himself. Panic and hyperventilation can cause havoc on the body, especially of one so young.
Our first aid training courses don’t just focus on the physical aspects of an emergency. They also take a look at the mental and emotional side.
As a responder, the emotional and mental toll can be incredibly difficult. Knowing how to approach this side of a crisis is invaluable – not just for yourself, but also for all of those involved in an incident.
If your training is not up to date, book a course with us now by searching for your nearest location!