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Accidents poll shows risk to income

Monday April 12th 2010

A widespread lack of simple first-aid knowledge is leading to people sustaining injuries which stop them working.

Up to 150,000 people a year could even be dying unnecessarily because too few of us know first aid, the St John Ambulance charity warns.

Launching a new drive to get people to learn first aid, it said almost 900 people a year choke to death when first aid could have saved them while 2,500 suffocate with a blocked airway and 29,000 die from heart attacks. Its survey of more than 2,000 people found 59% would not feel confident trying to save a life.

Almost a quarter (24%) of people would do nothing if they saw somebody struggling and would either wait for an ambulance to arrive or hope a passer-by knew first aid.

Sue Killen, chief executive of St John Ambulance, said: "We believe that anyone who needs first aid should receive it but our latest research shows that's just not happening.

"We can't rely on other people to have the skills - everyone should take the responsibility to learn first aid themselves."

The poll also highlights the need for income protection to cover mortgage and other payments for you and your family in the event of an accident or illness.

Copyright © Press Association 2010

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