Red Cross working to extend first aid, CPR training

I am heartened by Mr Ng Pau Ling's call for everyone to be equipped with cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) skills ("Equip everyone with basic CPR skills"; Forum Online, July 3).

Earlier in the year, on National Life Saving Day, Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean launched Singapore's first certifiable Citizen First Responder Training Programme.

Pioneered by the National Resuscitation Council and the National First Aid Council, the skills-based programme covers first aid, CPR and automated external defibrillator (AED) training.

Instructors facilitate practical training in the response for eight common time-critical situations, such as fainting, shock, unconsciousness and stroke.

The Singapore Red Cross is the first to extend Citizen First Responder training to the community. To make first aid and CPR skills accessible to everyone, everywhere, we have capped it at an affordable fee and are working closely with community partners to extend this training to as many individuals and groups as possible.

The Singapore Red Cross is fully dedicated to achieving the national goal of having a first aider in every home.

When a person is first aid trained, it allows him to intervene at the most critical moments, often making the difference between life and death.

Even fairly basic first response can increase the chance of survival, reduce severity of damage to organs, or mitigate serious injuries.

We need to work towards greater involvement of our citizens in this training so that we can become a society where first response by the community is a norm.

Learning life-saving skills, including first aid and CPR, is a critical part of building a resilient and secure Singapore.

We hope that more people will come forward to learn first aid.

Benjamin William

Secretary General/Chief Executive Officer

Singapore Red Cross