Treatment of a Choking Casualty During COVID 19

There are two types of choking:

  • Partial blockage
    • This occurs while eating and the casualty will be normally be able to cough and speak. The treatment during COVID 19 is to stand two meters away from the casualty and instruct them to continue to cough.


  • Full foreign body airway obstruction (FBAO)
    • This occurs when there is a complete blockage of the airway. The casualty will not be able to breath, cough or speak so now you must intervene.
      1. If there are family members with the casualty, instruct a family member on how to perform 5 back slaps and 5 abdominal thrusts while you the responder are standing two meters away.
      2. If there is no help, then you should put on your PPE and perform 5 back slaps followed by 5 abdominal thrusts. Call an ambulance by dialing 112 and 999.
      3. Always instruct the casualty to seek medical attention even if just one abdominal thrust has been performed.
      4. If the casualty goes unconscious, call 112 or 999 and check for signs of life. If the casualty is breathing, place them in the recovery position. If they are not breathing, perform chest compression CPR. Ensure you are wearing the correct PPE.
      5. Ensure you remove your PPE correctly.
      6. Wash hands and sanitise.