Joelle Cowley

Director / First Aid Trainer

I qualified as a Registered Nurse at The Royal London Hospital in 1982 and worked in a busy general children’s ward. I moved to Australia where I gained experience in adult general medicine. I had a break from nursing working as a flight attendant on long-haul flights with Qantas, dealing with in-flight emergencies and the challenging circumstances of giving care within the confines of a jumbo jet.

On returning to the UK I gained valuable experience in a 24-hour surgical centre and then care of the elderly. Following this, I spent a number of years as a prison nurse, where I was responsible as part of a nurse-led team for the medical care of 1,000 juvenile inmates, including emergency response to illness and trauma and working together with the mental health crisis team and substance misuse team.

My most recent role has been as an Occupational Health Practice Nurse at an Atomic weapons establishment, which required me to complete a Radiation Emergency Medicine Course in the USA. As part of a nurse-led team, I responded to medical and traumatic emergencies for a site consisting of over 10,000 staff that included office-based workers and construction workers.

As part of this role, I was responsible for training local hospital A&E staff on receiving radiologically contaminated casualties with potentially life-threatening injuries and providing staff training in first aid emergency response, including cardiac arrest, falls from height and electric shock.

I was involved in realistically staged casualty exercise scenarios, ensuring that as a team we were ready for any eventuality, including chemical hazards and industrial accidents. An important part of my role was making employees aware of managing long-term conditions and health awareness campaigns within this large organisation.

Working in Occupational Health nursing led me to first aid training which I love. I am accredited and regulated by Qualsafe Awards and hold teaching and training qualifications. I love the challenge of adapting my style to suit each group and use a variety of teaching methods to engage the learners. During my first aid training, I use manikins, trainer defibrillators and choking vests. There are PowerPoint presentations and short videos and I use a hands-on practical approach with lifelike scenarios.

I provide a variety of courses for 1 to 12 learners.