Further guidance on the safe use of manikins  

Further to the guidance we issued earlier this week (9 March 2020), we have additional information on the safe use of manikins amidst the concerns around the COVID-19 virus.  

The First Aid Quality Partnership have liaised with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), NHS England Microbiologists and Resuscitation Council (UK) regarding the matter and issued the following guidelines. 

With manikin hygiene procedures in place, the biggest risk in a classroom environment is handtosurface/surfacetohand contamination. 

The correct manikin hygiene procedures you should implement are:  

  •  ensure manikins have one-way valves – these and the lungs should be replaced after each session. 
  • use sanitiser/alcohol wipes between each learner and allow this to dry naturally. Use this not only on the mouth, but wherever hands have been placed, including the chest, nose and forehead. 
  • enforce strict classroom hygiene and exclude anyone exhibiting signs of a respiratory illness.  

NHS England consultant microbiologist advice is that the above is sufficient. However, if you want double protection, you should also issue learners with an individual CPR face-shield.  

If this is re-used by the learner, ensure it is used the same way around each time. Issuing a face shield is also likely to give significant reassurance to learners. 

Further guidance is available here.
 
You can also find further guidance from the Resuscitation Council UK website here:  

https://www.resus.org.uk/media/statements/resuscitation-council-uk-statements-on-covid-19-coronavirus-cpr-and-resuscitation/covid-training/ 

 Giving CPR in a real-world environment  

Advice for those who may need to give CPR in real-life situations has also been published.  
 
The Resuscitation Council UK recommend that if you are concerned about contracting the virus, not to put your ear down to the mouth to check for breathing, but instead to look for signs of breathing/life.  
 
If concerned, give compressions only as this is much better than no CPR at all.  
 
It should be remembered that in the case of paediatric arrest or where there is a delayed ambulance response, not giving rescue breaths could significantly reduce chances of survival, compared to the (at present) unlikely risk of contracting COVID-19, which may only result mild symptoms if you are healthy.  

Further guidance can be found here: https://www.resus.org.uk/media/statements/resuscitation-council-uk-statements-on-covid-19-coronavirus-cpr-and-resuscitation/covid-community/ 
 
We will bring you further updates and guidance as we receive it.  
 
In the meantime, trainers should make themselves aware of the government guidance and ensure that they adhere to it by visiting: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public. 

You can also visit our webpage which provides general guidance on coronavirus: https://www.highfieldelearning.com/guidance/coronavirus-covid19