H&S Management and Administration v5




1. RIDDOR Reporting of COVID-19

2. First Aid Cover and Qualifications


1        RIDDOR Reporting of COVID-19


Not all cases of COVID-19 require to be reported under RIDDOR (The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013). The reporting requirements relating to cases of, or deaths from COVID-19 under RIDDOR apply only to occupational exposure. The HSE Guidance states that the following should be:


    1. An unintended incident at work which has led to someone’s possible or actual exposure to coronavirus. This must be reported as a dangerous occurrence.
    2. Where a worker has been diagnosed as having COVID-19 and there is reasonable evidence that it was caused by exposure at work. This must be reported as a case of disease.
    3. Where a worker dies as a result of occupational exposure to coronavirus.


2        First Aid Cover and Qualifications


HSE Guidance notes that organisations need to ensure that they maintain the first aid cover than they need during the period of restricted movements (providing that personnel are still working of course). However, reduced cover due to fewer employees and/or the sharing of first-aiders with other businesses (as long as they have the knowledge, experience and availability to cover the first aid needed) may be acceptable.


Employers will need to refresh their first aid at work 'needs assessment', as they may need to consider factors such as vulnerable employees with first aid responsibilities. In addition, first aiders should consider the following points:


  • Try to assist at a safe distance
  • Minimise the time you share a breathing zone
  • Remember the 3P model - preserve life, prevent worsening, promote recovery
  • PPE recommended in the event of a CPR (please read below):
    • a fluid-repellent surgical mask
    • disposable gloves
    • eye protection
    • apron or other suitable covering



PHE Guidance has been issued on the question of how to give resuscitation under the current situation which is recommending not to perform rescue breaths and that PPE should be utilised where close contact may be required:


Cardiopulmonary resuscitation

If you are required to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), you should conduct a risk assessment (in the Police this would be a “dynamic risk assessment”) and adopt appropriate precautions for infection control.


In adults, it is recommended that you do not perform rescue breaths or mouth-to-mouth ventilation; perform chest compressions only. Compression-only CPR may be as effective as combined ventilation and compression in the first few minutes after non-asphyxial arrest (cardiac arrest not due to lack of oxygen).


Cardiac arrest in children is more likely to be caused by a respiratory problem (asphyxial arrest), therefore chest compressions alone are unlikely to be effective.


If a decision is made to perform mouth-to-mouth ventilation in asphyxial arrest, use a resuscitation face shield where available.


Should you have given mouth-to-mouth ventilation there are no additional actions to be taken other than to monitor yourself for symptoms of possible COVID-19 over the following 14 days. Should you develop such symptoms you should follow the advice on what to do on the NHS website.


Further advice is given by the HSE


This is clearly something that should be looked at on a case by case basis as part of your risk assessments as there will be other factors to consider, such as whether first-aiders have any health issues which preclude them from giving first-aid, whether PPE is available and training provided, whether first-aiders appreciate the risks and the required rules, etc.


Training and Certification

First aid certificate holders (including Emergency First-Aiders (EFAW)) whose certificate expires after 16th March 2020 and cannot access re-qualification training because of COVID-19 may qualify for an extension. To qualify for the extension, the certificate holder must be able to explain why they have not been able to re-qualify and demonstrate what steps they have taken to access the training, if asked to do so. The deadline for completing re-qualification training in will be reviewed by HSE over the coming months. Employers or certificate holders should still try to arrange re-qualification training at the earliest opportunity.


If first aiders are unable to access annual refresher training face to face during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, HSE supports the use of online refresher training to keep their skills up to date, although recommends that the practical elements of actual FAW, EFAW and re-qualification courses are delivered face to face.


People that had to interrupt their first aid training because of COVID-19 can simply restart where they left off at a later date as long as:


  • a full recap of training already delivered is completed before moving onto undelivered modules
  • the awarding body is content that the trainee can show:
    • a full understanding of all aspects of the course content
    • the knowledge and competencies required at the end of the training


If you require any assistance with risk assessing or developing safe working procedures during this challenging time please do not hesitate to contact ACS via the helpline number or using the details below. Good luck and work safely.


The ACS Team


0141 427 5171