2020 AHA GUIDELINES
The American Heart Association (AHA) revises the recommendations, or Guidelines, for Emergency Cardiovascular Care (ECC), including CPR, every five years. These modifications were released on October 21, 2020, and will be implemented into AHA classes over the next few months.
A few of the major topics of change include the implementation of Deliberate Practice and Mastery Learning, Booster Training and Spaced Learning, Lay Rescuer Training, ACLS Course Participation, Opioid Overdose Training for Lay Rescuers, Disparities in Education, and EMS Practitioner Experience and Exposure to Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest.
The following is a summary of some of the key issues and major changes for Resuscitation Education Science and Systems of Care.
1. The use of deliberate practice and mastery learning during life support training, and using repetition with feedback and minimum passing standards, in order to improve skills retention.
2. A recommendation that booster training such as brief retraining sessions should be added to massed learning and traditional course based training to assist with retention of CPR skills.
3. For laypersons, self-directed training, either alone or in combination with instructor-led training, is recommended to improve willingness and ability to perform CPR. The increased use of independent and hybrid training may remove an obstacle to more widespread training of the general public in CPR.
4. It is advised that middle school and high school age children should be trained to provide high-quality CPR.
5. It is recommended that the general public and those in non-healthcare settings receive training in how to respond to victims of opioid overdose, including the administration of naloxone.
6. Bystander CPR training should always address socioeconomic, racial, and ethnic populations who have historically exhibited lower rates of bystander CPR.
7. CPR training professionals should also acknowledge the presence of gender-related barriers in order to improve rates of bystander CPR performed on women.
8. EMS systems should monitor how much exposure their providers receive in treating cardiac arrest victims and provide continuing education on a frequent basis.
9. All healthcare providers should complete an adult ACLS course or its equivalent.
10. Use of mobile phone technology by emergency dispatch systems to alert bystanders to medical crisis that may require CPR or AED use.
11. Incorporate the addition of booster training sessions including brief and frequent sessions focused on repetition of prior content to resuscitation courses as this has been shown to improve the retention of CPR skills.
12. Acknowledge that long term survival after a cardiac arrest event requires support from family and professional caregivers, and incorporate experts in cognitive, physical, and psychological rehabilitation and recovery.
Here at Help-A-Heart CPR we will be implementing these and other advised changes over the next few months so stay tuned. For more information about the 2020 AHA Guidelines, please visit AHA 2020 guidelines. To register in an American Heart Association ACLS, BLS, PALS, or PEARS class following AHA 2020 guidelines view the Help-A-Heart CPR training registration portal.
MANAGING AN AIRWAY OBSTRUCTION
Effective airway management is a topic that is is reviewed in an American Heart Association (AHA) ACLS certification course. Without proper airway management, an individual may suffer from a severe lack of oxygen as their airway is blocked.
An airway obstruction can result in a serious medical crisis even resulting in death. But an individual certified in ACLS is taught the skills to manage a difficult airway management situation and is trained in various ways to remove or prevent an airway obstruction.
To better understand the importance of airway management, we'll examine a few common ways a person’s airway can become obstructed, and why this topic is critical in ACLS certification training.
WHAT CAUSES AN AIRWAY OBSTRUCTION?
An airway obstruction prevents air from reaching the lungs and may occur for various reasons including the following:
1. Tongue. If a person is unconscious and lying in a supine position, the tongue can retract into the throat and block the airway, preventing air from entering the lungs.
2. Foreign Object. If a person swallows or inhales a foreign object, this item may block the airway, resulting in choking, coughing and wheezing.
3. Chemical Burns. Harmful chemicals that touch the skin may cause an acute upper airway obstruction negatively impacting the trachea, voice box and throat.
4. Smoke Inhalation. Breathing in smoke may result in a shortness of breath, coughing and noisy breathing.
Unfortunately, airway obstruction often occurs without notice and can be treated in many ways.
If an object obstructs the airway, a special instrument may be used to remove the item. In other cases, an endotracheal tube could be used to create a passageway into the victim’s lungs to help the victim breathe, while a tracheostomy or cricothyrotomy (an opening through the neck into the airway) also may be used for airway obstruction treatment.
AIRWAY OBSTRUCTION PREVENTION AND TREATMENT and Becoming ACLS Certified.
There are many ways to prevent an airway obstruction, including the following:
1. When eating, it is important to eat slowly and carefully to ensure any food is chewed and swallowed completely. For those individuals or loved ones who wear dentures, ensure the dentures fit properly for proper chewing and swallowing.
2. It is also important to keep small objects away from children to eliminate choking and swallowing hazards.
3. Avoid excessive alcohol consumption before or while eating.
The ACLS certification training provides a great opportunity to learn about difficult airway issues and how to prevent certain airway management problems.
ACLS classes focus on a number of key topics, such as:
Basic Life Support (BLS) and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
How to initiate the ACLS process
The best ways to deliver airway management assistance
Recognition of arrhythmias
Use of appropriate medications and electrical therapy
When it comes to delivering airway management support, you’ll want to become ACLS-certified. By doing so, you will gain increased knowledge and confidence on the topic of airway management and be able to assist airway obstruction victims at any time.
Why You should choose help-a-heart cpr for ACLS CERTIFICATION?
An airway obstruction can be a life-threatening event. Fortunately, you’ll be able to receive valuable insights and information from experienced medical professionals if you enroll in an ACLS certification class from Help-A-Heart CPR.
One never knows when a obstructed airway emergency crisis may occur. However, by becoming ACLS certified you’ll be better prepared to provide airway management assistance quickly and efficiently. With our extensive ACLS certification training program, you’ll be able to discover what it takes to provide airway management support. You also may become a key contributor in an airway management emergency because you’ll be able to help airway obstruction victims.
This ACLS certification class takes approximately 12 hours to complete and provides a combination of hands-on lessons and classroom sessions to ensure you understand what it takes to provide airway management support. Upon successful completion of the ACLS Provider class, you’ll receive an American Heart Association ACLS certification card that will remain valid for two years.
An airway obstruction represents a serious problem that may cause harm or death. But with ACLS certification training from Help-A-Heart CPR, you can benefit from a superior learning experience that enables you to become ACLS-certified so you can provide lifesaving assistance in a broad range of critical situations.
Dr. Tracy A. Jones is an American Heart Association, ASHI, and American Red Cross Master Program Trainer, Instructor, & AHA Faculty Member located in San Antonio, Texas.