Basic Life Support: Would you Benefit from a Certification?

BLS Certification Courses in Concord and Walnut Creek

Sample BLS card

A medical emergency can happen anytime, anyplace, to anyone. Cardiac arrest remains a leading cause of death in the world. Would taking a Basic Life Saving, or BLS, class be beneficial for you? And if you determine it would be beneficial, which class should you choose?

A basic life saving class will teach you how to react calmly and correctly in the event that you are present when someone is choking, when they have a pulse but aren’t breathing, or when a person is pulseless and not breathing. Unfortunately, these type of emergencies happen daily. Fortunately, a BLS class will prepare you to respond to such an event and possibly save a life. Many jobs also require a BLS certification, such as nurse’s assistants, childcare providers, and lifeguards. Even if a job doesn’t require a BLS certification, it may pay slightly better with a certification.

Many options are available for BLS classes. Hospitals usually have classes certified by the American Heart Association. Two types of BLS classes are usually offered. The healthcare provider courses are only recommended for nurses and other healthcare professionals, and are often more expensive than the BLS class for the general public. Hospitals and other institutions often offer two types of courses for non-healthcare professionals: the adult BLS and the pediatric BLS. The pediatric BLS courses are geared at daycare workers, teachers and other child-care providers, and when offered through a hospital usually meet federal guidelines for child-care provider certification.  Please make sure you register for the correct class, and if you have any questions contact registration for further information.  Online options are also available, but it is generally recommended that online courses not be taken by individuals seeking certification for the first time, as the hands-on learning in the classroom is invaluable.  Online courses can be a good option for recertification, but make sure they are Red Cross and AHA certified.

Booklets have been released by the AHA and Red Cross you can use to prepare for the class. It is recommended that these be read before attending the class, because it is important to be familiar with the material. Most people who prepare for the courses with printed materials score higher on average and feel much more comfortable with their level of preparedness in actual emergency situations.

Expect to spend about 3-4 hours in a BLS class, and make sure you allot this amount of time, as students are usually not released early. It is a good idea to study before taking the BLS course since there is a 25 question written test. View a BLS Study Guide here. Wear comfortable clothing because you will have to perform CPR on a mannequin during a skills check-off. Bring a government issued identification card, as this will be needed to verify your identity and register you as certified. You should receive a certification card upon successful completion of the course.

A basic life saving skills course can prepare you for those critical minutes between the onset of a life-threatening event and the arrival of emergency personnel. You owe it to your family, friends and coworkers to get certified. It just may save a life.

Register today for an American Heart Association BLS Renewal Class in Concord. Or call us at 925-691-9780


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