With the growing need for first-aid professionals, more and more people are getting certified in BLS, CPR, and NPR programs. Being certified in one of these programs will help you save lives and get access to better job opportunities in healthcare. There are many ways you can get BLS certified.
Due to convenience and flexibility, many people opt for an online bls certification. But is it worth it? Does it offer the same benefits as classroom-based certification classes? In this article, know what you should understand about BLS certification before enrolling.
What Do BLS Courses Cover?
Before you enroll for a BLS certification, you need to understand what it covers. When you take up BLS training, you’ll be acquainted with the following topics:
- Cardiac arrest and its prevention
- Continuous and early CPR techniques
- Algorithm training
- CPR and BLS fundamentals
- Spotting cardiopulmonary arrest symptoms
- Post-cardiac arrest care
BLS or Basic Life Support enables you to treat anyone experiencing a cardiac arrest or any other respiratory distress. A cardiac arrest is when the heart stops functioning abruptly. Most first-responders and healthcare professionals are knowledgeable about the same.
You’ll learn how to handle the situation by adhering to the BLS algorithms. These are the course of action that you must take when performing life support.
The courses will also equip you with post-cardiac procedures — the things you need to do after the person recovers from a cardiac arrest.
BLS is Different from CPR
In healthcare, you’ll notice that some job demands a BLS certification while others a CPR certification. Even though both the certifications equip you with handling cardiac arrests, there’s a subtle difference you need to know.
CPR, which stands for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, provides knowledge on how to spot and treat cardiac arrests. They are mostly meant for the general public. But the Basic Life Support training covers much more than what CPR courses cover. Because of this, they’re more specialized.
So when a job demands BLS certification, you should know that it’s asking for advanced knowledge on CPR techniques, preferably with some hands-on experience.
So besides learning about how to maintain an open airway and induce circulation of blood and oxygen in the body, you’ll learn about more in-depth practices in BLS certification. This includes advanced airway management, administering oxygen, and using a bag valve mask.
Other than that, BLS and CPR certifications are nearly the same.
BLS Course Prerequisites
Most online BLS certification programs are open to anyone who applies. An eagerness to learn and treat cardiac arrests is all that’s required. But some certifying schools may require you to hold a high school degree and take up an aptitude test. Thus, it varies from institute to institute.
Millions of people suffer from cardiac arrest in America, and around 356,000 Americans die from it each year. Since a large number of cardiac arrests occur outside of the hospital, it’s better if more people know how to treat cardiac arrests.
Since BLS is an in-depth, specialized program, it’s the first responders and health professionals who take up this certification. CPR is more fundamental, and that’s why the general public opts for it. But there’s no reason why regular people cannot get BLS certified.
Age is also an eligibility criterion, and most applicants 18 years of age or above are admitted. You should check with the certifying institution about eligibility.
You Can Take the Classes Online
With the advancement in internet technology, institutions are offering online BLS certifications. These are equivalent to classroom certifications in terms of quality of education.
You have to strictly attend online classes over Zoom classes and complete your coursework. Besides that, the institution will also provide you with eBooks and assignment work.
Once the online courses are completed, you’ll be asked to attend on-site training. Here, you’ll gain the practical knowledge necessary to perform CPR on patients.
If you miss the online classes, then you might not receive the certification at all. Nor will the money be refunded to you in such cases.
You Need to Renew Your Certification
Your BLS certificate will be valid for two years from the date of issuance. You can renew it by taking up the BLS renewal course.
This will recertify you for the Basic Life Support jobs. If you’re already BLS certified and have experience working in healthcare, then you’ll find the BLS renewal course much more comfortable to pass. The renewal course is also delivered online by many institutes. You need to take the courses online and attend an exam.
If you’re a working professional, there are many advantages to taking online BLS certification. There’s no commute necessary, and the flexibility is on your side. With more people suffering cardiac arrests each year, there’s a need for more people to attend and treat them.