Emirates Celebrates World First Aid Day as 3000 Staff Graduate with Life Saving Training 

Photo Credit: Emil Bree/AviationSource

LONDON – Emirates celebrated both World First Aid Day and three thousand of its newly recruited cabin crew graduating from their 8-week ‘ab-initio’ training in order to become a standard-setting cabin crew.

As well as undergoing normal security and service training, Emirates crew are trained in critically important medical response training.

Response training includes essential life-saving skills, combined through a mixture of practical, in-situ, classroom, and online learning; these new recruits have been taught numerous potentially life-saving lessons.

The medical training provided by the flag carrier comprises dealing with a collapsed casualty, managing choking, and recognizing and managing breathing difficulties like asthma and hyperventilation.

Some sudden onset illnesses such as chest pain, stroke, low blood sugar, allergic reactions, deep vein thrombosis, barotrauma, decompression illness, and substance misuse. 

This learning and training are refreshed yearly as part of a recurrent training scheme that ensures staff is equipped sufficiently.

Flight simulation exercises are put on to maintain that staff is adequately equipped for ‘real-time’ incidents.

They are then assessed across the whole training schedule in a bid to keep standards high. 

Its new cabin crew will also learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), and also how to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) machine correctly, which would also support some life-saving first aid treatment.

Both pieces of training take place on specially designed medical mannequins.

At two different ends of the spectrum, the cabin crew is trained in delivering a newborn baby on board.

Sadly but necessarily, they are also trained in managing death. All training is delivered by certified aviation first aid instructors at Emirates’ world-class Cabin Crew Training Centre in Dubai.

Training such as this has been proven to have the desired effects. In July 2022 alone, there were two patients that required life-saving first aid treatment aboard an Emirates aircraft.

Two passengers across different flights both suffered a cardiac arrest, where blood flow to the brain and other organs slows and can be potentially fatal.

The crew used CPR & AED techniques to help keep the passenger stable until their flights could reach emergency services on the ground.

The cabin crew is not alone if something is to happen mid-flight.

They receive support from the flight deck crew, and Emirates also has an on-ground  Medical Support team that is based at headquarters in Dubai.

This support is available 24/7 via satellite communication and provides medical incident advice to crew around the world.

Employees also undergo training from a psychological perspective. Things such as gaining consent to assist passengers, showing empathy to those needing treatment and their companions on board, staying calm, and communicating clearly with the casualty.

Mental Health Support Services for staff themselves, if needed it after an incident, including the Emirates employee assistance program, a peer support service, and the Safety – Emirates employee wellbeing program. 

Emirates continues to promote its first aid training as it believes it helps new recruits to develop their communication skills, initiative and leadership qualities, and the ability to work more effectively as a team.

It also has been shown to improve focus and helps promote mental strength alongside improving their ability to work under pressure.

All the aforementioned are just a by-product of the main ambition, which is helping people and saving lives.

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Jamie Stokes

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