CPR Certification prepares an individual to provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation to people who are not breathing. This procedure can definitely save a life. Anyone can take a CPR training course to prepare them to act quickly if someone stops breathing. Medical care professionals are required to be CPR certified. EMTs and Paramedics use CPR on a frequent basis on their job.
CPR training course
When looking for CPR training, you might notice more than one course option. There are usually general CRP courses which will provide basic training on how to perform CPR (and possibly some other first aid techniques) on babies, children and adults. Some training centers also offer more specialized CPR courses. For example, they might have a class providing more in depth instruction on assisting children and babies.
Another popular course is one called BLS (Basic Life Support). This, too is a CPR course and may cover the same basic materials as a general CPR training class. Sometimes a few more advanced procedures are covered in the course. Basic Life Support classes are usually designed for enrollment by medical care professionals. Some certifying agencies might call the courses something other than BLS. For example, one course is called CPR-PRO. This simply means it is CPR training geared towards medical professionals.
CPR Training Types
There are three basic CPR training types:
- In Person: An in person training course will provide live instruction to the students. The course may be taught through a combination of classroom lectures, videos, practice scenarios and hands on practice using CPR practice dummies. This makes it easy for students to ask questions and practice techniques until they perfect them.
- Blended: A blended program is one in which you can complete some of the training online. The training may be offered through live lessons with a live instructor. They may also use videos and interactive computer simulations. You will then need to go in-person for the hands on practice portion of the training. And the skills portion of your certification testing will need to be finished in person.
- Online: There are online CPR training classes. Most of these classes have materials you read and videos you watch. At the end, you will take a test and must receive a passing score to become certified. Some employers will allow you to use these programs to renew a current CPR certification if your first certification was done in person. But most employers will want you to have hands on practice even for recertification. Generally speaking, completely online courses will not be accredited and will not count as being CPR or BLS certified. They are usually for educational purposes only or to help lay individuals to know some basic life saving techniques.
CPR Certification Topics
There are some core topics that you should expect to cover in your CPR or BLS training class. They include:
- How to perform the heimlich maneuver. This can be used to help save an individual who is choking. You will learn the different methods used whether the person choking is a baby, child or grown-up.
- First Aid-Many CPR courses teach some very basic first aid. They might teach you what to do if someone has a burn, abrasion, cut or even a sprain. You will learn when and how you should move someone who has been injured.
- The course will teach you about the use of chest compressions and breaths. You will learn the proper ratio of chest compressions to breaths. This varies depending if you are performing CPR on an infant, child or adult. The course will teach you how to properly place your hands or fingers depending on the age of your victim.
- A CPR course should also teach you about AED device. They should give you basic instruction on the use of the devices
- Your CPR training program should teach you the proper steps to act when someone needs your help. For instance, it will teach you in what situations you should begin CPR right away and in what in situations you should call 9-1-1 first if there is not something there to call for you. You will learn how to quickly assess the situation when someone is not responsive or not breathing.
- The course should teach you if and when you should ever move a patient. It should also provide you some basic knowledge to keep yourself safe such as how to respond if someone is being electrocuted.
The exact information and how in detail the points are discussed will depend in large part on the particular courses you are taking and your course format and training location.
CPR Certification Course Duration
Some course are taught in a single day. Others are taught over the course of a couple days. They may be broken into knowledge and then skills portions. Some courses are 4 hours or less in length. Others might cover a few more hours of training. If you do qualify to renew your certification online, it could take an hour or less to finish depending on the course design.
In person CPR courses are often designed to test you in two ways. The first is to test your knowledge. This can be done with a written (can be on computer) test. The tests often ask you a series of multiple choice questions. Courses should also include a skills section. This is where you will be asked to demonstrate your CPR knowledge on a dummy to be graded by your instructor. You must pass all testing materials and skills tests in order to receive your certification.
Benefits of CPR Certification
There are many benefits to having your CPR certification. If you are going to work as an EMT or any healthcare professional, you will need your certification. Many times, your must have an active and valid certification before you can even begin your training or education for these fields. You must keep your CPR certification active throughout your career and as long as you are practicing in your field.
If you are not yet a medical professional, a CPR course can still benefit you. You could learn life saving techniques in case there is ever an emergency with a loved one or friend. You might even use CPR someday to be able to save a life of someone you don’t even know. It is always good to be prepared since emergency situations can come up anytime and anywhere.
Where to take a CPR course
There are various places to take a CPR course. If you are planning to work as an EMT or medical professional, check with your employer to see if they have CPR class sessions. Local hospitals, nursing care facilities and other medical centers may have CPR courses on a regular basis.
The Red Cross is one of the major certifying bodies in the U.S. You can contact a Red Cross near you to find out what CPR options they have. There is a good chance you can find a program close to home.
Check with college and universities as well. Some of them will have CPR classes. Do not forget to check with local vocational high schools or colleges. Some of those locations may also offer CPR courses.
Cost of a CPR Course
The cost of CPR courses can vary. It is usually less expensive to renew your certification than to take a regular CPR course. The BLS program offered by the Red Cross can be as much as $85. Some general level CPR courses are $30 or less. You will need to look around at options to find the best price for you. Just make certain the class you take will provide you with the skills you need to carry out CPR and first aid safely. Also make sure the course is through a certifying provider that is accepted by your employer. Some online courses are $20 or less. But please remember that many times those courses will not actually make you legally certified to practice CPR in a work setting