Government announces new plans to make training in paediatric first aid a legal requirement for nursery staff in England.


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In October 2012 nine-month-old Millie Thompson, of Stockport, died after choking on her lunch at Ramillies Hall School and Nursery in Cheadle Hulme.

An e-petition set up by Millie’s mother Joanne instigated a review regarding the training of nursery staff. Mrs Thompson’s e-petition received more than 102,000 signatures calling for a change in the law. As a result of the e-petition, on Monday 15th December, MP for Cheadle, Mark Hunter, lead a debate on changing the law to ensure every nursery worker is trained in paediatric first-aid.

Announcing the proposals, Childcare and Education minister Sam Gyimah said: “Today’s proposals will mean that thousands more staff will be able to respond to emergencies more quickly, making sure parents really can access the very best possible childcare choices for their families.”

An inquest at Oldham Magistrates’ Court heard that whilst Millie was being fed by a supervisor whose basic first aid certificate had expired, she began coughing and crying. Millie was passed to a colleague who had paediatric first aid training and who gave her back slaps. However, Millie suffered a fatal cardiac arrest shortly after paramedics arrived.

The coroner said paediatric first aid training for all nursery staff was “a matter of national importance”.

Read more about the coroners plea for first aid training on the BBC news website

The tragedy of Millie’s death has also resulted in the country’s Ambulances being required to carry a fully stocked life-saving paediatric kit. This new requirement has come into place following recommendations made by the coroner at the inquest of Millie Thompson.

The National Ambulance Service Medical Director Group has stated that paediatric equipment on ambulances must conform to a newly-established national minimum standard list. This list ensures every ambulance across the nation must carry a fully stocked, life-saving Paediatric kit.

Joanne Thompson has been quoted as saying, “We are extremely pleased that NWAS took the coroner’s recommendations seriously and that these changes have now been made. Somewhere in the work of these amazing paramedics, they will need the paediatric kit and there are ultimately children in the future who will directly benefit from the changes that have happened due to Millie’s passing.”

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