Covid Secure Training Environments
Throughout the COVID-19 lockdown, there has been an allowance for “emergency training”, which is training specifically for those who, because of their roles, required training. (e.g. healthcare workers, key workers, and new recruits to both these workforces). Now that the UK government has given a conditional green light for businesses to resume trading, we need to ensure a Covid secure training environment for our candidates. It is vital that we all continue to do our best to eliminate or mitigate the risks of transmitting this virus.
The government is clear that workers should not be forced into an unsafe workplace. We fully support this. This page details the new procedures and processes that we are bringing into place for our courses.
To provide you with a Covid Secure training environment, we have undertaken a COVID-19 risk assessment for each of the subjects that we teach, just as we have for other health and safety related hazards. We are also following the requirements of the First Aid Awarding Organisation Forum and implimenting these across all our face to face courses as being best practice. These requirements are as follows:
Before booking your course:
If you fall into the following categories, you should be aware that the government advice is to isolate yourself or restrict your contact with (or proximity to) other people. It’s therefore important that we check whether you fall into these categories prior to commencement of a course.
While it’s not lawful to refuse you access, we believe that it’s a perfectly responsible action to strongly advise you of the enhanced risks to your safety.
At the time of booking your course, we will ask you to confirm whether you feel that you may be within one of these high-risk categories. If you are, we ask that you consider that the risks to you are highly likely to outweigh the reward.
• Clinically extremely vulnerable:
Clinically extremely vulnerable people will have received a letter telling them they are in this group or will have been told by their GP. Guidance on who is in this group can be found here:
• Clinically vulnerable people:
Clinically vulnerable people include those aged 70 or over and those with some underlying health conditions. All members of this group are listed in the ‘clinically vulnerable’ section here:
To ensure a Covid Secure training environment, if you believe any of the following to be true, you are not permitted to attend the course:
- You or anyone in your household has displayed any of the signs or symptoms commonly associated with Covid-19 infection within the past 14 days, these include:
- Dry cough or sneezing
- Shortness of breath
- High temperature
- Flu like symptoms
- You have been in contact with any person within the past 14 days who has, or is suspected to have, contracted Covid-19
In the immediate period before entering the learning environment, you have any doubts or concerns that you may have become infected or exposed to Covid-19.
All of these also apply to our trainers & assessors.
On the day(s) of your course:
Traditionally we would accept up to 12 candidates per course. As we are now ensuring a minimum space between candidates, this limits the number of candidates that we can accept in our training room.
Our new training venue allows us to accept up to 10 candidates, because of the size of the room – it’s huge!
There will be tape markings on the floor to ensure your separation. You must adhere to the marked seating and walkway areas.
On arrival at the training venue, we will ask to take your temperature, using our non-contact infra-red thermometer. Temperature checks will take place outside the building.
37oC is a healthy temperature. Should your temperature be above this level, we will discuss it with you, away from other candidates before allowing you entry into the building. Certain medications, medical conditions as well as prior physical exertion can lead to elevated temperatures.
Should no reasonable cause be identified, you MAY have contracted Covid-19 and you should regard yourself as such and follow the government advice.
It is not a justifiable risk to allow you to enter the building at this point (even to visit the toilet).
At the start of the course, you will be shown a video on how to wash your hands. You will then be asked to wash your hands. Please take a moment to watch the video now;
You will be encouraged to use hand sanitizer/soap & water after each transition to and from the classroom. We will remind you to avoid touching your face throughout the day & again after any transition to or from the classroom.
To maintain a Covid Secure training environment, we will regularly sanitise door handles/push plates, & work surfaces using 70% isopropyl alcohol spray. This kills the virus almost instantly.
- A minimum of 2m distance between individuals must be observed at all times.
- We will not be using face to face seating. Your chair & desk will have an exclusion zone around them. This will be marked on the floor.
- If face to face activities are unavoidable, you should work with fixed partners or teams to avoid close or direct contact with multiple learners.
- We will be keeping close proximity activity time as short as possible.
- We will ensure good ventilation by use of open windows & doors as much as possible.
- When involved in physical contact with others, you should pay particular attention to sanitation measures immediately afterwards, including washing your hands.
Movement around the training venue
- A minimum of 2m distance between individuals must be observed at all times.
- Contact with door handles, push plates, etc., will increase the spread of the virus.
- We will provide individual hand towels for each learner or single-use, disposable gloves to be put on before any movement.
- We will restrict access between different areas of a building or site as much as possible.
There will be a number of signs and posters to build awareness of:
- good handwashing technique,
- the need to increase handwashing frequency,
- avoid touching your face and to
- cough or sneeze into a tissue which is binned safely (or into your arm if a tissue is not available).
To maintain a Covid Secure training environment, We will regularly sanitise door handles/push plates, & work surfaces using 70% isopropyl alcohol spray. This kills the virus almost instantly. The toilets will be supplied with hand soap, single use paper towels, waste bins and hand sanitiser.
Consumption of food & drink
As Covid-19 enters the body via the mouth, eyes or nose, the period of consuming food or drink increases the risk of infection. Therefore, social distancing should be increased during these periods.
As normal, you are required to bring your own lunch & snacks. Please use outside areas to eat your lunch when possible.
Hot drinks will be available as normal. The process for making drinks will be discussed before the start of the course. Please feel free to bring your own drinks, mugs, etc if you wish.
Disposable gloves will be made available for courses that require you to touch things (manual handling, first aid, etc). Gloves should be disposed of carefully in the bins provided.
Instructors, assessors and learners must wear gloves when handling paperwork.
It’s important to remember that wearing a single pair of gloves for multiple tasks, or during interactions with multiple surfaces raises the risk levels of spreading the virus.
Where gloves are worn, they should be changed frequently. If this is not possible, it is better to wash/sanitise your hands between interactions and not use gloves.
Here’s how to remove your gloves safely:
Face masks & face coverings
There are some circumstances when wearing a “face covering” may be marginally beneficial as a precautionary measure. The evidence suggests that wearing a face covering does not protect you, but it may protect others if you are infected but have not developed symptoms.
A “face covering” is not the same as a “face mask”, such as the surgical masks or respirators used by health and care workers. Similarly, “face coverings” are not the same as the RPE (respiratory protective equipment) used to manage risks like dust and fumes in an industrial context.
Wearing a face covering is optional and is not required by law, including in the workplace. But, if you have face coverings or masks, and wish to wear them during your course, we encourage you to bring them with you.
A face covering can be very simple and may be worn in enclosed spaces where social distancing is not possible. It needs to cover your mouth and nose, ideally from the bridge of your nose to underneath your chin, and there should be minimal gaps between the cover and your skin.
If you choose to wear a face covering or mask, it is important to use them properly.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser before putting a face covering on, and after removing it.
- When wearing a face covering, avoid touching your face or face covering, as you could contaminate them with germs from your hands.
- Change your face covering if it becomes damp or if you have touched it.
- Continue to wash your hands regularly.
- Change and wash your face covering daily.
- If the material is washable, wash in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions. If it is not washable, dispose of it carefully with your usual waste.
Track & Trace
We request that all learners monitor their health before and after their course.
If you believe that you may have contracted Covid within a period of 14 days from the course conclusion (i.e. the last day of face to face training) then you must inform us of this straight away.
Ideally (when available) you will be using the government phone app to support this ability to inform other learners of their potential exposure to risk. However, our manual process provides a ‘fail safe’ and supports those learners who do not have access to the required technology.
Should we receive information that someone on your course has developed symptoms within 14 days, we will notify you, the trainer and any other individuals who may have been in close proximity to that person of the possible exposure risk.
If you have any questions about any of the points above, or you want to discuss something else about the way your course will be run, please contact us to discuss it.