Harrow Way Year 10 student Eddie Maloney put his ‘Be Ready’ first aid training into practice recently when his mother Kate experienced a choking incident at their home. Eddie was trained earlier this year as part of Harrow Way’s ambitious initiative to deliver certificated first aid training to all Key Stage 4 students.

Commenting on the accident, Eddie’s mother Kate Maloney said: “I was in the kitchen at home, with Eddie close by but in the room next door. I’d been having a cup of tea and piece of cake which I inadvertently ‘inhaled’. It was firmly stuck – there was no shifting it with a throaty cough! I couldn’t speak or call out but was obviously managing to make some kind of sound as Eddie asked if I was OK and came into the kitchen. He could tell just by looking at me what had happened and very calmly proceeded to administer the back blows. After the third one he’d managed to dislodge the stuck cake and I could start to breathe again. He was superb, I felt he was totally in control and knew exactly what to do, which of course he did following his first aid training at school.”

Harrow Way’s ‘Be Ready’ project involved a five-week training course tailored to help students deal with the most common first aid emergencies which happen among teenagers and in the home such as asthma, anaphylactic shock, cuts and grazes, heart attacks and choking. On completion of the course students receive a Level 3 Emergency First Aid at Work qualification.

The choking module, which Eddie so aptly deployed, included the mechanics of why and how someone can choke, how to recognise when someone is choking, the importance of staying calm and how to treat a person choking. The training included the use of a choke vest (training aid) which is used to teach students, through simulation, the correct way to perform back slaps and abdominal thrusts.

Harrow Way’s Site and Facilities Manager Steve Badby, who delivers the training said: “We wanted to give our students a highly valued qualification and skills which would stand them in good stead for the future. I am enormously proud of Eddie who, in the face of a genuine emergency, stayed calm, kept a level head and knew what to do and how to do it. It demonstrates the value of the first aid training and the difference it can make.”

For more information on Harrow Way Community School, please call 01264 364533 or visit www.harroway.hants.sch.uk.  Visits to the school by appointment are always welcome.

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