Twelve teachers of Rousseau Primary School in St. Andrew have been trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), asthma management and paediatric first aid under the Health Promoting Schools Programme.
The training programme, sponsored by the National Health Fund (NHF), was conducted at the school over a five-day period.
Course Facilitator and Master Trainer from St. John Ambulance, Linford Edwards, said the course included treatment for wounds, bleeding, fractures; how to treat with asthmatics and burn victims; proper use of dressing, bandages and slings; as well as paediatric first aid and CPR.
“The aim of the training is to get early childhood educators to be at the highest standard of first aid delivery because they will be the first responders when children receive injuries at school. They are the ones that will pave the way for the medical facility to have ease of continued treatment,” he said.
Vice Principal of the school, Irene Foster, said the course was interesting and informative.
She added that the training will be very effective at the school, because with a population of over 1,200 students, it now gives them a wider pool of knowledgeable persons to pull from, when there is an incident at the school.
She also expressed appreciation to the sponsors of the programme.
“I want to thank the NHF for their contribution in educating us along this line because, before, we would just do what we knew and now we are informed, so we now do things based on knowledge rather than what we think,” she explained.
The Health Promoting Schools Programme is an ongoing collaboration between the Ministries of Health and Education, where targeted health interventions are conducted in schools across the island.
It has six components – Environmental Health, Physical Activity, Nutrition, School Health Service, Mental Health and Violence Prevention.
The training at Rousseau Primary was carried out under the School Health Service component.
First aid and asthma management were identified as priority needs for the school, based on the number of asthmatic students in attendance, and the fact that there is no school nurse.
A Health Promoting School is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as one that constantly strengthens its capacity as a healthy setting for living, learning and working.
As such, it becomes a place where all members of the school community work together to provide students with integrated and positive experiences and structure, which promote and protect their health.