Clearly, it is almost impossible to deliver first aid at a safe distance. However, a first aider should do everything they can to assist at a safe distance from the patient and the best way is to minimise the time they share a breathing zone.
If the patient is capable of doing things, the first aider should encourage them to do so. This could be putting pressure on a bleed, holding a dressing in place, and putting on a mask, these are the kind of things that an able patient can do themselves.
Work in the framework of the 3P model:
The first aider should use appropriate PPE before administering first aid, such as;
Preserve life: CPR
- a fluid-repellent surgical mask
- disposable gloves
- eye protection
- apron or other suitable covering
- Only deliver CPR by chest compressions and use a defibrillator (if available) – don’t do rescue breaths
After delivering any first aid
- Ensure you safely discard disposable items and clean reusable ones thoroughly
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitiser as soon as possible