What is First Aid?
A common first aid symbol
is the provision of immediate care to a victim with an injury or illness, usually effected by a lay person, and performed within a limited skill range. First aid is normally performed untilthe injury or illness is satisfactorily dealt with (such as in the case of small cuts, minor bruises,and blisters) or until the next level of care, such as an ambulance or doctor, arrives.
The key guiding principles and purpose of first aid, is often given in the mnemonic "3 Ps". Thesethree points govern all the actions undertaken by a first aider.
revent further harm
- the overriding aim of all medical care, including first aid, is to save lives
Prevent further harm
- also sometimes called
prevent the condition from worsening
,this covers both external factors, such as moving a patient away from any cause of harm,and applying first aid techniques to prevent worsening of the condition, such as applying pressure to stop a bleed becoming dangerous.
- first aid also involves trying to start the recovery process from theillness or injury, and in some cases might involve completing a treatment, such as in thecase of applying a plaster to a small wound.First aid training also involves the prevention of initial injury and responder safety, and thetreatment phases.
The main aims of first aid are to:
1.Preserve life - This includes the life of the casualty, bystander and rescuer.2.Protect the casualty from further harm - Ensure the scene is safe.3.Provide pain relief - This could include the use of ice packs or simply applying a sling.