Having first aid as a skill was ranked as only the fifth technique which adults feel most confident performing, behind dressing a wound, treating a burn, stopping excessive bleeding and treating a sprain.
This is despite it being the skill adults are most likely to have learned on first aid courses (29 per cent) – ahead of dressing a wound (29 per cent) and clearing the airways of a choking person (27 per cent).
Being scared about not performing CPR correctly (36 per cent) was the main concern for hesitant Brits, who admitted they would think twice before performing the technique on someone in a state of cardiac arrest.
Concerns the person would die and being fearful they are not trained enough to perform CPR (both 25 per cent) were also holding people back.
Building CPR confidence
Dr James Cant, chief executive at Resuscitation Council UK, which commissioned the research, said: “CPR is simple to learn, but as we can see, many people don’t have the confidence, or are afraid of doing it wrong.
“If you are reluctant or unable to do rescue breaths, hands-only CPR will still give the person the same chance.
“Be confident to intervene and give it a go - you can’t make things any worse, instead, you could bring someone’s heart back to life.”
The survey also found 23 per cent of those who have not learned CPR or did not want to learn it said it was because they felt they would not react well in an emergency situation.
And worryingly, 24 per cent who had received first aid training of how to perform CPR had done so more than 10 years ago.
But almost half (46 per cent) admitted they had previously administered CPR or knew someone that had.
Manikin set to tour UK to help spread awareness
The research comes after Sex Education star Connor Swindells teamed up with Resuscitation Council UK, as part of its Restart a Heart campaign to help increase awareness of CPR
The 26-year-old, dressed in a grey turtle-neck sweater, confidently explains the processes of how to spot dangers and begin chest compressions on someone in a state of cardiac arrest – when a person’s heart stops beating.
But he's not just performing the life-saving technique on any old manikin. In fact, the Sussex-born star begins CPR on a version of the manikin designed to look exactly like him - complete with chiselled abs.
In the two-minute film, he said: "When Resuscitation Council UK needed a big name to teach the public CPR, I said absolutely.
"I can't work with just any manikin. Something relatable, but handsome, lovable yet tough. A manikin you'd want to save."
That manikin is set to go on a tour around schools, community groups and workplaces across the UK in a bid to boost Britain’s ability to help save lives.
Dr James Cant added: “Connor’s involvement in our campaign helps spread awareness about just how easy it is to learn CPR.
“The survey results are encouraging in the sense there’s a large amount of people in the UK who know how to perform a CPR, which can help save the life of someone in cardiac arrest.
“But there is also some way to go in getting more people engaged and feeling confident they can make a difference if needed.
“We want people to have the self-belief and conviction that in a moment of need, they can become a hero and help save someone.”