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Barriers to Canadians Taking First Aid & Why we Need to Think Outside the Box Part 2 of 2

Last week, we left off on number three of the five barriers I see to people taking first aid training. 
Number three, it's too complicated, and I leave feeling less confident. We have touched on this a little bit in the last two comments. If you make something overly complicated or use terminology above the participants' reading grade level, they will most likely leave feeling confused and not confident. We need to understand that First Aid in the workplace is more skills-based than literacy-based. Having participants use life-saving skills in practice during an emergency can promote better retention rates than making sure that they understand all the correct terminology and step-by-step directions. Frequently step-by-step directions revolve around perfect world scenarios, where this is rarely the case. Teach participants to think for themselves, think on their feet, think outside the box; this will give them the ability and confidence to assist during an emergency situation. 
The fourth point is that first aid training is too expensive. Standard or intermediate first aid training ranges from $95-$150 across Canada. Most often, this is paid out of pocket by the participant and not by the company they work for. During the pandemic, prices for everything have risen due to inflation, and first aid training companies across Canada have had to follow suit and increase prices to make a living. If we can offer better alternatives that allow less time in class, there would be potential to lower the cost of first aid training. However, the only option currently is a blended program where half is done online, and half is done in person. If we could get the in-person training component down to half a day. In that case, training companies could offer two training sessions in one day and help lower their overall overhead cost, resulting in lower pricing for first aiders. 
And the final remark that I typically get or have participants ask me before booking is, "I'm not good at reading and writing, and I don't know if I will be able to complete the final exam?" This is probably the most cause for concern. Participants are so concerned about getting a passing grade of 80% on the final exam, an exam that really should be primarily skills-based. This is a huge barrier as 48% of the Canadian population falls well below high school literacy rates. The old and dated memorizing test method clearly does not work. There's almost an unwritten rule with basic and intermediate first aid, where the instructors handling the test will either do the entire task verbally with the entire class or if students do not meet that 80% average, instructors will go back and tell them to rewrite or choose another option. No, this is not just an Atlantic Canada thing; this is a Canada-wide issue. Why are we putting so much pressure on participants to hit an 80% average? Why is this not skill-based to make sure that they thoroughly understand the importance of their learning skills?
Would you rather have someone who got 96% on the test but couldn't compress on a chest properly, or would you prefer the one that practiced using their first aid skills and got a 96% average of compressing the depth and rate they were supposed to be compressing? The entire training industry needs a complete overhaul. To date, there hasn't been anybody, but Life Start willing to call out the inequities within the industry itself. We have been pushing for this and will continue to push for it. Every participant has the right and should take first aid training, and it's a life-applicable skill that is sorely lacking in 2/3 of Canadians.