Standard Precautions

Even before COVID-19 it was important that first aiders take 'standard precautions' to protect themselves from cross infection when providing first aid.

Providing first aid does present a risk of disease or virus transmission between patient and first aider or vice versa. Obviously each situation is different and the risk is greater in situations where there is mouth-to-mouth contact (eg, during CPR) and where people are exposed to exhaled air, blood, and oral secretions (eg, saliva), stomach contents through regurgitation, and foamy fluids – usually from the lungs in drowning situations.

However, by taking standard precautions, which in most first aid scenarios means using personal protective equipment, the risks can be minimised.

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