CFR le Chéile Conferences 2008

The theme of PHECC’s CFR le Chéile conferences, the implementation of the CFR standards and the availability of the CFR training suite calls for us all to work together. PHECC acknowledges the vital role that voluntary, auxiliary and private organisations, as well as individuals, play in CFR training and service delivery. The CFR standard is crucial to quality pre-hospital emergency care and fits into the continuum of PHECC’s Standards, Clinical Practice Guidelines and information systems. Presentations from both conferences are available on

Voluntary and Auxiliary,
17-18 October, Sheraton Hotel, Athlone

In launching PHECC’s CFR training manual and DVD, Seán Kelly, former GAA President spoke of communities being the bedrock of Irish society, from the national network that is the GAA community, to the individual community first responder engaged in supporting community activities. Mr Kelly said ‘Community First Responders trained to the proper standard, are the key to cardiac first response and it is essential that access to training is made as widely available as possible. The aim of this DVD and training manual is to facilitate standardised CFR training in Ireland based on the Irish standard developed by PHECC and incorporating the ILCOR guidelines.’ Mr Kelly congratulated those involved in the production of the CFR training suite and wished all cardiac first responders well in their community endeavours.

Mr Tom Mooney, PHECC Chairman, in opening the conference emphasised the importance of recognising PHECC’s CFR Standard as part of a framework of standards designed to facilitate comprehensive and quality pre-hospital emergency care across Ireland. Mr Mooney continued, ‘in essence the CFR Standard is fundamental to all pre-hospital emergency care, and the key to its successful and comprehensive implementation is the quality of instructors. This training suite provides another option for quality training materials already available. More and more organisations are seeking and achieving PHECC recognition as training institutions for the delivery of CFR courses. PHECC’s overriding mission is to protect the public and one of the ways of achieving this is to provide access to training and ultimately to have more of the public trained in CPR and AED use in the community. (Continued in next column..)
  Plenary and workshop sessions throughout the day explored a wide range of CFR-related topics including:
  • PHECC’s vision for EMS in the future from responder to practitioner as well as the process for recognition of training institutions
  • Patient Care Reporting
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Register
  • The National Pre-Hospital AED Standards 2008
  • Establishing a CFR Community Programme – CFR Guide
  • Updates on Basic Life Support & Cardiac First Response from PHECC-recognised voluntary and auxiliary organisations including The Civil Defence Board, The Irish Red Cross and The Order of Malta Ambulance Corps.
The 6th workshop of the day - CFR Course Delivery - was presented by Mr Brian Power, PHECC Programme Development Officer. Practical in nature and involving audience participation this lively workshop took delegates on a step-by-step walk through CFR course delivery.

In closing the conference, Mr Barry O’Sullivan introduced delegates to Rose Uí Shúilleabháin, Teacher of the Year award-winner (People of the Year Awards 2008). Rose gave an inspirational and practical account of her experience while performing CPR on a student who collapsed at a crosscountry event. Rose emphasised the need to comply with the drills as taught during CFR training because in the heat of the moment there is little room for independent thought. Rose’s contribution was very appropriate being at the end of the conference as it summed up what everyone present was there to try and do - to standardise cardiac first response training throughout all communities in the country.


Overall, the success of this conference lies in the feedback received from delegates, a detailed account of which is available in the CFR le Chéile Conferences 2008 Proceedings publication, available in hard copy directly from or to download from our website Generally, however, delegate feedback was very positive:

FR le Chéile – Athlone,
17-18 October, 2008

 Excellent Very Good Good  
 Administration &  Organisation:
How would you rate the assistance you received by the PHECC team before and during the conference?

 62%  32%  6%  
 Conference Programme:
How would you rate the conference programme & content?

 53%  37%  10%  
 Conference Venue:
How would you rate the venue facilities?

 74%  25%  1%  

Please indicate your overall satisfaction with the conference

Very satisfied Somewhat satisfied Not satisfied  
   95%  5%    

A míle buíochas to all speakers and delegates who participated wholeheartedly in the CFR le Chéile experience in Athlone.The information shared, the knowledge gained and the contacts made are all steps towards the delivery of quality pre-hospitalemergency care for people in Ireland. Thanks also to our spot-prize sponsors.

Congratulations to those who won spot-prizes at CFR le Chéile gala dinner, including:


Alan Carolin 


IPod Docking Station 


Mercatum Office Solutions 

Bill Smith  Wine Gift Set  Washington Business Forms 

Bridget Synnott  Digital Camera  Mercatum Office Solutions 

Daniel Curran  Manikin & AED Trainer  Flashpoint System 

John Fitzgerald  1st Responder AED Training Kit  Emergency Care 

Noel Murphy  Defibrillator  Heart Safety Solutions 

Noel Winston  Wine Gift Set  DC Kavanagh Printing 

Tom Horwell  Cross Pen Seven Star Ireland

CFR Le Chéile: Occupational First Aid Instructors, 5 November, Osprey Hotel, Naas

In welcoming delegates to the OFA Instructors CFR le Chéile conference, Dr Geoff King Director, acknowledged the vital role that Occupational First Aid Instructors play in training and service delivery. Dr King’s message was loud and clear ‘We want to learn from you and assist you in the successful implementation of the CFR standard so that more people are trained, and potentially more lives are saved. You are of fundamental importance to an integrated Emergency Medical System.’

The OFA CFR le Chéile conference consisted of plenary sessions with question and answer sessions for each. Delegates were given the opportunity to submit their areas of special interest in writing which lead to a lively final discussion session. We were delighted that Kieran Sludds of the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) joined the questions and answers panel to give direct feedback to delegates on HSA-specific issues. 

Delegates welcomed the clarity received on areas of most concern including:

  • Aspirin storage and administration
  • The relationship between PHECC / HSA / OFAAA
  • PHECC recognition of courses and instructors
  • Legal indemnity
  • Use of child and infant AED