The heroic actions this week of childcare worker, Nikita Hutch, when she performed CPR on a 6 week old baby in the Ilac Centre in Dublin again highlights the need for both parents & those working with children to be trained to perform lifesaving first aid on babies & children.
Commenting on todays report in the Irish Daily Star, Denis Naughten TD said “While one cannot be but impressed by the decisive & heroic actions taken by Nikita Hutch, it must be remembered that she is in fact one of a minority of childcare workers who trained to perform CPR and first aid on an infant”.
“Presently children’s first aid is not compulsory as part of the training of a childcare worker and in many childcare facilities only a small minority of staff are trained to this standard. Some have no first aid training at all”.
In order to raise awareness of the need for children’s first aid for everyone working with, or caring for pre-school children, on Wednesday morning last, TDs and Senators received training on how to treat a choking adult or child in a session organised by Denis Naughten TD & Senator Jillian van Turnhout.
Denis Naughten also took the unusual step of opening his constituency offices last Tuesday to host training courses for parents and grandparents, which were provided by Millie’s Trust.
Millie’s Trust is a charity dedicated to providing first aid training for families, and the charity’s founders Joanne and Dan Thompson provided the training for both parents and politicians. Joanne and Dan’s daughter Millie passed away in October 2012 aged just nine months following a choking incident that occurred while she was in the care of a nursery in the UK.
They have joined Denis Naughten and Jillian van Turnhout in campaigning for a change to the law governing first aid in childcare facilities and also met with Minister for Children, Dr James Reilly, to highlight the need for new regulations in this area.
Outlining the current law, Denis Naughten stated: “At present – both in Ireland and in the UK – the law only requires that one person on the premises be trained in paediatric first aid: a fact that has shocked both parents and politicians alike when brought to their attention this week.
“While there are many people employed in this area who are undoubtedly trained specifically in this area of first aid the fact remains that any crèche etc is only required by law to have one person on the premises with such training. We believe this situation needs to be addressed urgently.
“The Minister for Children has confirmed that regulations to give effect to legislation to strengthen the current inspection regime and underpin the Early Years Quality Agenda are currently being drafted and I would urge the Minister to ensure this area is dealt with in those regulations.”
To find out more about Millie’s Trust log on to www.milliestrust.com or www.facebook.com/milliestrust.