SO WHAT IS "BLS"?
"Can you tell me if I'm signing up for the right class?" That's a question we hear often at Help-A-Heart CPR. Due to various professions, work environments, and state licensing regulations, it can be confusing understanding the CPR class you need to take to satisfy all of the necessary requirements.
WHAT IS BLS?
BLS stands for "Basic Life Support", and is the basic CPR course for most professionals in the healthcare environment. The CPR protocol covered in the American Heart Association BLS class are applicable to all critical medical situations. Basic Life Support is just that. The basic CPR skills of compressions are reviewed as well as breathing, and AED use, for both one-rescuer and multi-rescuer situations. Modifications to these procedures that are not covered in lay rescuer CPR training include administering pulse checks, using bag valve masks (BVMs), CPR in the presence of an advanced airway, and addressing the various issues having to do with team dynamics.
WHO MIGHT NEED TO TAKE BLS?
Healthcare providers and/or those entering the healthcare industry are the students most often seeking the BLS CPR class. For the majority of healthcare professionals, basic life support training is a necessity. Since the few moments following a medical crisis are so critical, often meaning the difference between life and death, anyone charged with caring for patients must be prepared in the event of a life-threatening emergency. Some of the professions most often needing BLS include nurses, physicians, EMT's, paramedics, pharmacists, physical therapists, respiratory therapists, medical students, nursing students, nutritionists, dietary aides, and mental health counselors.
In the U.S., there’s an American Heart Association-mandated protocol for the immediate treatment of critical events that must be closely followed by anyone licensed to practice medicine in any form. It is the responsibility of all those responsible for treating the public, to also renewal their BLS certification every two years. In addition, with periodic changes being made to the guidelines, timely renewal is also mandatory.
BLS CLASS OPTIONS
For newly licensed healthcare providers, we offer BLS certification classes that strictly follow the AHA guidelines for immediate, on-site treatment of life-threatening medical emergencies. The class curriculum includes training in adult, child, and infant CPR; conscious and unconscious choking protocols for all ages; Automated External Defibrillator (AED) operation; the employment of breathing barriers and bag valve masks; two-rescuer CPR instruction; cardiopulmonary emergency protocol; and special resuscitation situations. Upon successful completion of the course, students will achieve AHA BLS certification and be ready to pursue their medical career possessing the skills they need to save lives in an emergency situation.
With the specific needs of our students in mind, we also offer BLS certification classes in two other forms: one designed for those already deeply familiar with the protocols and simply looking to BLS renewal classes, and one blended learning program that takes into account the often hectic schedules of medical professionals. The Heartcode BLS certification involves the blended learning option and allows students to complete the online course and didactic portion at their own convenience. The students is then able to schedule the hands-on skills testing which typically lasts 20 to 40 minutes.
WHAT IS THE HANDS-ON BLS CLASS LIKE?
The American Heart Association BLS Provider class involves extensive hands-on practice. The intent is to reinforce the basic skills of healthcare provider CPR in an environment that is focused on learning while being supportive, structured, and supervised by an experienced BLS instructor. The face-to-face BLS CPR classes at Help-A-Heart CPR optimize skills development which allow for effective review, reinforcement, and when required, correction and modification. Whether you are seeking a BLS Renewal class or will be taking BLS for the first time, our classroom training will empower you with the skills to administer CPR effectively and with confidence. In addition, if you are continuing your training with the American Heart Association ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) certification, the skills you learn and develop in BLS will help you as proceed to gain the ACLS certification.
With the best resources in the field and a history of excellence, Help-A-Heart CPR represents the very finest in emergency education. Our courses are taught only by acknowledged experts in their fields with real world experience in the on-site treatment of medical emergencies. Our goal at Help-A-Heart CPR is to empower students and provide educational materials designed to make the learning experience as smooth and effective as possible. In our BLS CPR classes, we maintain a one-to-one manikin-to-student ratio to ensure that students are able to practice techniques effectively and at sufficient length. We’re proud to offer the best in life-saving training.
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.