CA coaches now all need a first aid certificate
Those of you reading this who aren't involved in coaching may still be interested.
As of late last year, CA came out with a policy that all coaches need to have a first aid qualification (and it has to be up to date!). This is being phased in, any new coach or new qualification sought by a coach as of Jan 2010 has to have a ticket, and as of Jan 2011, we all have to have it.
I think this is a good thing. I've also had first aid qualifications since I was 13 years old (surf lifesaving as a nipper and then as a senior). However, my surf bronze hasn't been requalified since some time in the mid 1990s so it's lapsed and my PADI diving first aid qualifiation, while it never expires, is not worth the paper it's printed on. Seriously, the PADI 'medic first aid' ticket was self assessed(!) and never expires. They've changed that now but back when I worked as a dive master (late 1990's and early 2000's) that was their course. How they (PADI) got away with it I don't know .. But there you go .. I've had many opportunities to practice first aid, most memorable was during(!) my first Warny, where myself and the other bloke I was riding (we weren't racing, we just wanted to get to the finish!) with, about 30km from Warnambool, had a car crash happen right in front of us. Muggins here took over and got the injured people stable and comfortable until the ambulance arrived, handed over to the pros and then we jumped back on our bikes and finished the race! heh ...
So, I had to get a new first aid ticket. Ok ... Time consuming (and time is, for those of you that know me, the one thing I don't have a lot of to spare!). I went a googling and found this : The Red Cross do an online course. Alarm bells ringing? First aid online? How? There's a fair chunk of theory work which works pretty well online with a few multiple choice tests along the way. Then there's a practical assessment of CPR and I expect a few other bits and pieces that I'll write about when I've done it. The online theory bit is pretty good - it's quite thorough. A few things have changed since I last did any real first aid training, mainly CPR practice has gone from 60bpm compressions to 100bpm compressions and some snake and spider bite things have changed. The Red Cross course doesn't teach two-person CPR like we learned in surf lifesaving, but that may be because it's too hard to co-ordinate when you don't necessarily know the skill level of your co-first-aider where we certainly did know it in surf lifesaving. We did hours and hours of practice as kids. Some things, like times tables, you just never forget. 15:2, 5:1, 60bpm ... repeat .. Well, now it's 30:2, 5:1 is gone and the cadence is up to 100bpm. No worries.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, I've done the online part of the course and will get the practical part of it done in a week or so. It's pretty good. Cost $150, you can do the theory component in your 'spare' time from anywhere where you can get access to a web browser and the information is good.