Caregiver Peter has been enrolled on a first aid course to become one of the nominated ‘first aiders’ at the Bridge Street nursing home. Peter must attend a number of training sessions before he can be recognised as a qualified first aid provider.

Situation: Peter is attending a specific first aid training workshop concerned with treating patients who are choking. The workshop considers the reasons why someone might choke as well as giving a three-step approach to dealing with such a situation.

Audio: Listen to the audio file here.

Grammar points:

Present perfect tense

Persons: Mr Law (first aid training instructor) and Peter (caregiver)

Location: The session takes place in a training room.

Mr Law: It’s very easy for someone to get something stuck in their throat and to start choking. I’ve done it myself on a number of occasions. Have any of you choked on an object? OK, I see most of you have choked on an object at some point, though it looks as though you all survived. Struggling for air can make someone panic. I’ve helped a number of people in that situation and it’s important that you act quickly. So what kind of things have you choked on? Peter?
Peter: I’ve choked on boiled sweets a few times and once I choked on a fish bone.
Mr Law: I’ve choked on boiled sweets myself, they can be quite a problem. You would probably be amazed at some of the strange things that people have choked on. Young children are particularly prone to choking as they often put strange things in their mouths. Old people who don’t have full sets of teeth can also be prone to choking, perhaps on fruit stones or even soft food. So you can see that it’s important to know how to deal with this hazard. As you have helped me in other workshops Peter, would you mind helping me again?
Peter: No I don’t mind at all. I’ve enjoyed taking part in the demonstrations.
Mr Law: Let’s imagine that Peter has got something stuck in his throat. Peter are you choking? Try and cough. Can you cough it out? As Peter cannot cough out the object I need to take a different action. Peter lean forward and I will slap you firmly on the back. I am slapping Peter between the shoulder blades around five times. Has that removed the object Peter? As the object still hasn’t moved I’m now going to give Peter up to five abdominal squeezes. Locating a positing between the breast bone and belly button I will use my fist to give short sharp squeezes. Has that removed the object Peter? From this point you should alternate between slapping between the shoulder blades and giving abdominal squeezes, for at least two more rounds. Ensure that you or someone else has called for an ambulance. If the patient becomes unconscious and stops breathing, you should commence CPR at once. Are you ok now Peter?
Peter: Yes, I think I managed to swallow it in the end.
Mr Law: So if you see someone choking, follow these three steps. Cough it out. Slap it out Squeeze it out. I’ve prepared some information leaflets on dealing with this situation. Please take one each from the table at the back of the room. Now find a space in the room and work with a partner to practice your response to someone choking.
Project number: 543336-LLP-1-2013-1-DE-KA2-KA2MP - This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication [communication] reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.