Kids should know first aid

The St John Ambulance service in Cheshire is encouraging adults and children to brush up on their first aid skills.

The service is running a number of community courses across the county aiming to get as many people as possible involved.

Research carried out by St John Ambulance service last year showed that almost 150,000 people die every year in circumstances where first aid could have helped them.

Another hard hitting stat was that almost 60 % of people in the UK wouldn't know what to do if they had to deal with a medical emergency.

A number of children have used their first aid skills to save the lives of friends and family.

In March 2008 Jamie Fraser, 11, from Ellesmere Port administered first aid to his friend who was having an epileptic fit. Earlier that year in January, Sam Holmes, also from Ellesmere Port used back slaps to stop his friend from choking. They are just two examples of many.  

Gary Joines is the Delivery Co-ordinator for the St John Ambulance in Cheshire says there are many more that helped people:  "They are the ones we know about. There may be many instances where these youngsters have been trained in the schools and gone home and done something."

The first aid courses are designed to cover choking, severe bleeding, CPR and dealing with someone who is unconscious.

Gary Joines believes that training children at an early age is vital for them and the future generations:  "If we can teach children, they will teach their children and so on. What we are doing is creating a blossom effect, like a flower it will flourish."