First aid qualifications for ECE services and kōhanga reo

Your early childhood education (ECE) centre or kōhanga reo must have one first aid qualified person present for every 50 children attending at all times.

For home-based services there must be a first aid qualified adult present at all times while children are attending. However, there is an allowance for instances where a new educator’s access to first aid training is limited due to circumstances beyond the service provider’s control. In such cases, service providers must ensure their educators:

  • have knowledge of first aid, and
  • gain a first aid qualification within four months of starting work at the service.

Further operational guidelines are available for services about when this condition applies and how to assess an educator's first aid knowledge.

This is to meet the requirements of the following requirements of the Licensing Criteria:

First aid qualification

To be recognised as a qualified first aider an adult must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Have a current New Zealand Qualifications Authority- (NZQA) approved first aid qualification.
  • Be a registered medical practitioner or nurse with a current practising certificate.
  • Be a qualified ambulance officer or paramedic.

If a child is injured, any required first aid must be administered or supervised by an adult meeting these qualification requirements.

Get the right first aid qualification

First aid qualifications must:

There are a number of unit standards available that provide a first aid qualification to meet our requirements. These are:

  • for centre-based services and kōhanga reo:
    • unit standards 6401 (Provide first aid) and 6402 (Provide resuscitation level 2)
      These cover first aid for children and adults.
  • for home-based services:
    • unit standard 25459 (Provide first aid for young children).
      This covers first aid for children only.

Unit standards 6401 and 6402 (detailed above for centre-based services and kōhanga reo) may also be considered for home-based services.

We also recommend that you complete unit standard 6400 which will teach you how to manage first aid in emergency situations.

Training providers

View first aid training providers with consent to assess unit standards 6401, 6402, 6400, and 25459 on the First Aid page of the NZQA website.(external link)

Once you have completed your first aid training, your training provider must report your first aid qualification to the NZQA so they can add this to your Record of Achievement.

Keeping your qualification current

To keep your first aid qualification current you will need to attend a refresher course with a registered first aid provider. 

Qualification reviews

From time to time the first aid qualifications are reviewed.

The first aid unit standards are currently under review by the standard setting body, the Skills Organisation.

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