Mark James Johnson

Mark James Johnson

Mark works in the Health and Care Department at the IFRC in Geneva. He is also the coordinator of the IFRC's MOOC project.

Location Geneva, Switzerland

Activity

  • Hi Christine - to be clear, the preferred situation would be to get someone else to get help while you provide CPR. If this is not possible, we encourage calling the emergency services on speaker phone allowing you to provide CPR whilst you call for help. Finally, if non of these options are possible and you will need to leave the person who is not breathing...

  • Well done Jacqueline and thank you for sharing your experience with us.

  • Excellent replies everyone - as many have said, there are alternatives to help you provide rescue breaths in a safe manner. If you do not have the equipment available, then you will need to make an assessment in the moment and decide whether there is a risk to you or not. We recommend giving rescue breaths if you can as there is evidence of their effectiveness...

  • Thank you for sharing your experience Alison - you should be very proud of your actions.

  • Hi Melvin - Geraldine is correct. An important principle of first aid is to ensure that you do not put yourself in harm's way. You will need to carry out your assessment and make a decision in the moment. However, if you can not give rescue breaths, every effort should be made to provide chest compressions - however, again, ensuring that you do not put...

  • Hi Melvin - thanks for the question. Unfortunately, we can't address serious injuries on this course. If you are interested in more advanced first aid techniques, we encourage you to sign up for a practical course.

    We will learn about the actions to take in the case of bleeding on this course - for serious injuries where there is a risk of the person losing...

  • Hi Matthew - yes, as you say, things have certainly moved on and we certainly wouldn't recommend holding a child upside down by their ankles. Not least, because the evidence shows that the technique of laying an infant on the arm is far more effective. Whilst an emergency situation can be scary, we hope that this course will help first aiders to stay calm,...

  • Fully agree Mariagrazia

  • Hi Chrishanth - if you are interested in learning more, please do contact your local National Red Cross or Red Crescent Societies to see if they provide practical first aid courses.

  • Thank you for your feedback Karen.

  • Hi Sameerah - do remember that if someone is showing signs of choking, they are indeed responsive. And therefore the actions should be followed as shown in the choking steps. Only when the child or infant is unresponsive and not breathing should the first aider provide CPR.

  • Yes Sophie, you are correct. We recommend in the section 'Aftercare and referral for medical examination' that a child/infant should be examined after a choking event. We'll ensure it is repeated more explicitly in future courses. Thanks a lot for your feedback.

  • Hi Nicola - the problem has now been corrected. Thank you for letting us know.

  • Hi Christine - the problem has now been corrected. Apologies.

  • Congratulations to you all - it was a very knowledgeable group this run and it was a pleasure to watch the various discussions in the comments. On behalf of the IFRC team, thank you to everyone that contributed. We hope that you will continue your first aid education. See you on the next course.

  • Thank you for your feedback Seema. The survey has now been corrected.

  • Hi Joanne - thanks for letting us know. It is now corrected.

  • Hi all, thank you for bringing this to our attention. I understand that it has now been corrected.

  • I fully agree Jawan - first aid should be recognised as a fundamental skill and made available to all.

  • Hi Barry and Nicola - do remember, we're only talking about a minor burn here on this introductory course. If the symptoms show that it is more than a minor burn (i.e. skin is blistering, peeling, and/or white or charred) then the response is different. This is beyond this course - I'd encourage you to pursue further courses to learn more on this situation.

  • Well done Helen

  • Hi Nicola - thanks for the question. Yes, that's a difficult situation. Coughing and seeking help will always be the first actions to take. Some first aid courses teach how to self-administer an abdominal thrust for example - of course this is far beyond this introductory online course however. If you're interested in learning more advanced techniques for...

  • Hi Tina, Nicola and Christine - apologies that it is not clear. The cross is a guiding line to help you identify a reference point for your fingers. As the image shows, your fingers should be right below where the white dotted lines meet to make a cross. This position just below the cross is the recommended finger position.

  • Welcome to the course everyone - I look forward to the discussions over these next few weeks.

  • Thanks Annette - good feedback that we'll incorporate into future courses.

  • Hi Anik, I've replied to Asmeena above, but I'll repeat my answer here - it is impossible for us to say exactly how hard. The thrust should be forceful, but should be adapted to the size of the person who is choking. This is a technique that we present here to give you some knowledge if you do find yourself in an emergency situation, but we encourage you to go...

  • Hi - it is impossible for us to say exactly how hard. The thrust should be forceful, but should be adapted to the size of the person who is choking. This is a technique that we present here to give you some knowledge if you do find yourself in an emergency situation, but we encourage you to go to a practical, in-person training with your National Red Cross or...

  • Hi Camilla - this is a common question. In this case, when the child or infant becomes unresponsive, their throat muscles could relax and open the airway enough for you to give rescue breaths or at least allow you to remove the object (although one should be very careful - only do so if you are sure of removing the object and always avoid doing a blind 'finger...

  • Hi Lynne, thanks for the question. Starting with rescue breaths is preferable. The reason being that the most common type of cardiac arrest observed in children is called asphyxial cardiac arrest, which is when someone is not getting enough oxygen into their lungs.

  • Hi Anik - as Andrea correctly says. It will depend on your assessment. If it is unsafe, or the injury is so severe that breaths are not possible, then chest compressions alone must be given.

  • Hi Maiko - many AEDs now have special adapters for children. But it is important to follow the instructions in the AED which will explain if it is appropriate to use that specific AED on the child. No, chest compressions are the not the same on babies - we will see the difference in the next step.

  • Thanks for the question Rachel - it really depends. If someone is wearing simple loose-fitting clothing which aren't impeding you being able to deliver CPR, it's perhaps not so important to remove them. However, if a woman is wearing a bra for example with metal or another material that could restrict the effectiveness of the compressions, it is important that...

  • Hi Maiko. It's natural - many people are nervous about this aspect of providing CPR, but the tips above can help. Also, I wouldn't say it doesn't matter if you break a bone, but it is vital that if you find a child in this position who is not responding and also not breathing, it is important that you do your best to overcome that fear and provide CPR - it...

  • Yes, exactly. CPR for unresponsive and not breathing. Recovery position for unresponsive but still breathing.

  • Hi Puspa, thank you for the question. Please review the image above which shows the correct position. You can also pause and review the video at the top of the page.

  • On behalf of the IFRC team, welcome to the course everyone. It is excellent to see so many people have signed up to learn first aid. Enjoy the first week.

  • Welcome to the course everyone - I hope you're enjoying the content so far. See you in the comments.

  • Good additions Keith - thanks for sharing

  • Good point David, ensuring that you have alternative modes of communication is important. Having a non-mains powered radio is also useful as important public messages may be shared by radio if TV is down or there are internet disruptions, for example.

  • Hi everyone, welcome to the course. Enjoy week 1!

  • Hi Ana - I'd encourage you to contact FutureLearn. Unfortunately, the teaching team here at the IFRC can't help with this kind of issue. Well done for completing the course.

  • @AnnMacdonald Hi Ann, do not remove a crash victim's helmet - leave that to the professionals to assess if the person has serious neck or spine injuries.

  • Congratulations everyone - the discussions on this run have been excellent. Thank you all for your engagement, and on behalf of the whole team at the IFRC, we wish you all the very best as (hopefully) you continue your first aid education into the future.

  • Thanks for the feedback all - we'll look into how we can provide perhaps printable flash cards, or something similar for future courses.

  • Hi all - this is a very difficult question and one which doesn't have a definite answer. Providing CPR to save the person's life remains as the most important action if your assessment shows that they do indeed require CPR. However, as many of you have pointed out, the situation could be more complicated, especially if bystanders do not understand the actions...

  • Thanks Linda and I certainly didn't mind your contributions - I can see the training at the British RC was in good hands. And I agree with you, National Society first aid teams and trainers are undoubtedly VIPs. In my opinion, they remain at the very heart of our Red Cross Red Crescent Movement.

  • Hi all - thanks for bringing this to our attention. As you indicated Jim, we do not have any control over this element of the Code of Conduct. We'll look into this with our colleagues at FutureLearn to ensure this is done better from our side in the future.

  • Cool water should be used for minor burns. Do not use toothpaste, oils, butter or other foodstuffs. Other products could cause infection and are less effective (or in fact completely ineffective) at cooling the damaged area.

  • Hi Diane, this is certainly true for more severe burns that may require medical attention (where the skin has broken, for example) - using cling film to protect the burn before a medical professional can provide care is often recommended, although discussion on this is beyond this introductory course. For burns that meet the symptoms of 'minor burn', as we...

  • The point is that very cold water can cause more harm, especially where you already have damage to the skin - just as putting any part of your body into an extremely cold environment for an extended period of time can cause harm.

  • Thanks for your comment Andrew - this is a very good example where it is acceptable to move the individual. The casualty's life was in immediate danger and you needed to take action as a last resort to remove them from that situation.

  • Leave the object in the wound Sim, but also make sure that you find material to 'pack' around the wound allowing you to apply pressure around the area and at the base of the object to help stop the bleeding.

  • Hi all, thanks for the question. Research has shown that the most effective action to stop bleeding is to apply direct pressure. Raising the limb on its own is shown to not be very effective at stopping the blood flow, and therefore, we recommend that the priority first aid action is to apply pressure. If you're then able to raise the limb, then you are free...

  • Hi Peter - as I've answered for some others.

    Research has shown that the most effective action to stop bleeding is to apply direct pressure. Raising the limb on its own is shown to not be very effective at stopping the blood flow, and therefore, we recommend that the priority first aid action is to apply pressure. If you're then able to raise the limb, then...

  • Hi Linda - just adding this answer here so you can see it too.

    Research has shown that the most effective action to stop bleeding is to apply direct pressure. Raising the limb on its own is shown to not be very effective at stopping the blood flow, and therefore, we recommend that the priority first aid action is to apply pressure. If you're then able to...

  • Hi Lizzie - thanks for your question. Research has shown that the most effective action to stop bleeding is to apply direct pressure. Raising the limb on its own is shown to not be very effective at stopping the blood flow, and therefore, we recommend that the priority first aid action is to apply pressure. If you're then able to raise the limb, then you are...

  • Thanks for you comment Andrew - you point is certainly valid. We recognise that the video does not (and of course cannot) include all hazards - we therefore try to use this a teaching point to get you to think about what is missing and is important. Well done.

  • Good addition Marby - mitigating risks is often about the everyday actions that you take that may seem unimportant because of their frequency, when in fact, they pose the greatest danger.

  • Good addition Otson

  • Correct Aude, well done.

  • @SusanO'Connor Thanks Susan - Diane's proposal could be a useful course of action. 'Packing' around the wound using a clean material could also work. For example, you could wrap a clean jumper around the base of the protruding object to keep it in place, which would also allow you stem the flow of blood. We will need to use our initiative and make use of the...

  • Thanks Helen - we've corrected it now.

  • As Aude said, use the skills that you have to the best of your ability. Staying calm and assessing the situation really is key in a situation with multiple causalities.

  • @derekgrimley Good additions Derek, thanks for your contribution.

  • Welcome Linda - we're always happy to see National Society volunteers. I hope you enjoy the course.

  • @ElaineDuarte Linda is spot-on.

  • Hi Linda - this is something that you may need to adapt to in the moment. Getting the person to bend forward may help. Otherwise, grab a chair, or jump on a raised bit of ground etc. The very best first aiders are those that can think on their feet.

  • If this helps them secure themselves, you can use a chair or other surface. However, speed is important when someone is choking and you have identified that they need back blows - therefore, don't waste time if a chair or appropriate surface is not immediately available.

  • HI Diane, thanks for your question. If they have mild discomfort in their throat, liquid may help solve the issue. However, if they are choking and cannot breath, there is no time to waste in applying the first aid techniques described in this step. They are the most effective actions to take and fluids are unlikely to remove a blockage that is serious enough...

  • Very true John - in many ways this is crucial and it will give you the best chance to apply what you do know as quickly and efficiently as possible.

  • @LauraMorgan Correct Laura

  • Hi Diane, it is not necessary to ensure that the tongue is protruding from the mouth. You can simply make sure that their airway is visibly clear and by ensuring that their jaw remains slightly open, you've secured their airway.

  • I agree Nicholas - For me, first aid should be viewed as an essential life skill, as essential as learning to read and write. But I'm perhaps a little biased.

  • @Al-Da These topics go beyond an online introductory course like this, and so we would encourage you to seek a certified course to learn these skills. However, in the case of gunshot to the chest, the most important actions would be to apply pressure to the wound to stop the bleeding and calling for emergency help. For someone who has broken ribs, it is better...

  • Hi Chryssa - thanks for your question. The position is used as it ensures the person's airway remains open whilst not putting undue stress on the rest of the body.

  • @ElaineDuarte Thanks for your question Elaine. No, the recommendation is that you follow the instructions provided by the AED if the person is unresponsive and not breathing. BUT, just ensure that you do not place the AED pads on the pacemaker (the person will have a raised area of skin like a credit card and likely a scar on their chest where they had their...

  • We don't recommend striking your family members on the back and giving chest thrusts - you could hurt them unnecessarily.

  • @JanetteT Hi Janette, thanks for your feedback. We'll look into how we can include some content on AEDs in the future. In many cases, they do differ in terms of their design depending on the country and manufacturer, and therefore, we have avoided providing an example. And since instructions are given with the AED, we've left these details out previously....

  • Hi Evelyne, I would disagree that the first aider can do nothing. Calling for emergency help once you have identified it is a stroke is the most important action. However, as a first aider, you can comfort the person and make sure they are comfortable. Just having someone there to comfort the person and reassure them that help is on the way can make a...

  • Hi Helen - lying the person down is one action you can take. The key lesson here is make sure that the person is in a comfortable position. That could be lying or sitting - whatever is comfortable for the person.

  • Good point Susan - that is very true

  • You're absolutely right Susan, there are indeed different types of strokes. However, for this introductory course we chose not to go into the technicalities of these different types. We try to ensure that the content is as clear and precise as possible on the first aid actions to take for someone with little or no medical knowledge. We were worried going into...

  • @MohammadEbrahimMohammadi Hi Mohammad - thanks for your question. Indeed, the steps are different for adults. Remember in the children and babies course, we said that the most common type of cardiac arrest observed in children is called asphyxial cardiac arrest, which is when someone is not getting enough oxygen into their lungs. We therefore provide 5 initial...

  • Hi Igor - thanks for letting us know. The link has been corrected.

  • Welcome to the course everyone - we hope you enjoy the next two weeks with us. See you in the comments.

  • Hi Helen - thank for your question and thank you for pointing out the incomplete sentence on chest compressions, it has been corrected.

    Onto your question: it is possible to be mistaken when assessing someone for cardiac arrest and whether they are breathing. It is therefore important to assess carefully if they are breathing using your first aid ABCs....

  • Welcome to the course Aida

  • @AngelaS Hi Angela, I answered your question on this in another step, but I'll add it here also for your classmates.

    "Hi Angela - thanks for the question. This is a difficult one to answer online, but it is often recommended that you take a normal breath (not a deep breath) and blow steadily into the infants mouth for 1 second. But the key here really is...

  • Hi Angela - thanks for the question. This is a difficult one to answer online, but it is often recommended that you take a normal breath (not a deep breath) and blow steadily into the infants mouth for 1 second. But the key here really is that we're not blowing too hard when we do this and we should be looking for the infant's chest to rise - this is the...

  • @SandraMurray Thank you for your feedback Sandra - we'll certainly look into how we can make this clearer.

  • Thank you for your feedback Kholeka - a table comparing the differences between infants and children is an excellent idea, we'll try and create that for a future run of the course.

  • Hi Karen, thanks for the question. You are more than welcome to tap them on the shoulder and shout to get a response if you so wish. Remember, if you are following your ABCs, this type of action (checking if they are responsive etc) should be done whilst you're running through your airway and other checks.

  • Hi Salma - if you can't also provide rescue breaths, you can provide chest compressions only instead.

  • Hi Sher - good question. Personally, I would do my best to explain to the parent that I needed to help their child. I'd try to explain everything I was going to do and why I was going to do it. If they really would not let me assist, I would try my best to convince them to act allowing me to talk them through it. Of course in an real emergency situation this...

  • Welcome Kawthar

  • Thanks for your feedback Heidi, we'll take your points into account for future runs. Well done on completing the course

  • Good additions Andrew - well done.

  • @LindaMay Hi Linda - thanks for your question. Research has shown that the most effective action to stop bleeding is to apply direct pressure. Raising the limb on its own is shown to not be very effective at stopping the blood flow, and therefore, we recommend that the priority first aid action is to apply pressure. If you're then able to raise the limb, then...

  • @AudeB. Hi Aude, thank you for your question. As this is an introductory course, we don't address chemical or other more serious burns as these can be complicated situations which require more intermediate to advanced first aid training. We'd encourage you to contact your local National Red Cross/Red Crescent Society if you are interested in learning first aid...

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