Bystander effect: Training in skills makes people more willing to help

Bystander effect: Training in skills makes people more willing to help

Strengthening our physical and psychological first-aid capabilities will go a long way towards making Singapore a more resilient and caring society ("Help crisis victims with psychological first aid"; last Sunday).

Many societies have been struggling with the bystander effect - where passers-by are less likely to help someone in need if other passers-by are also present.

Numerous news reports have highlighted instances where a large number of passers-by do not offer help to hit-and-run victims.

Many people have been appalled by this lack of intervention.

Research has suggested that the bystander effect can be overcome if passers-by believe they possess the necessary skills to help.

Research has suggested that the bystander effect can be overcome if passers-by believe they possess the necessary skills to help.

It has been found that those who have undergone basic first-aid training feel more confident and are more willing to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation on a stranger in need.

Being educated on the bystander effect also makes one more likely to intervene and offer help.

Providing first-aid courses to the public and raising awareness of the bystander effect could make Singapore a more helpful and resilient community.

Yeo Pei Shi (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on September 18, 2016, with the headline 'Bystander effect: Training in skills makes people more willing to help'. Print Edition | Subscribe