Basic Life Support (BLS) certification is an essential requirement for people working in career fields involving certain liabilities and risks. BLS certification programs include cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training plus training pursuant to additional life-saving protocols and techniques. The benefits of receiving a BLS certification extend into professional and personal aspects of your life alike. BLS training includes and goes beyond CPR and helps save lives worldwide. Knowing how to obtain a BLS certification depends on your location. It also requires knowledge of the different types of BLS certifications available and which one is best for your needs and goals. Continue reading to learn about the importance of a BLS certification and how to obtain yours today.
What Is a BLS Certificate?
A Basic Life Support (BLS) certification involves essential training and education required for students to pass BLS competency examinations. Each country maintains its own BLS certification standards, although most standards are based on scientific data as dictated by the joint international Emergency Cardiovascular Care/International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ECC/ILCOR) organization. ECC/ILCOR focuses its efforts on cardiac care and the healing of sick and/or damaged hearts. Graduates who successfully obtain BLS certification learn to perform initial cardiac-based medical assessments, provide airway maintenance and CPR alike.
Interesting Fact Behind BLS Certification Standards
As stated directly above, ECC/ILCOR focuses its efforts on overall cardiac care and healing sick and damaged hearts. In fact, the official name used to create the ILCOR acronym was chosen quite purposefully. The Latin noun, “cor,” means “heart.” The word “il” in Latin means “not, opposite of, without.” Essentially the acronym ILCOR is meant to translate to “ill heart” and emphasize the purpose of the organization’s focus.
Top-5 Benefits of Getting a BLS Certificate
Obtaining BLS training offers benefits to any person who receives it, be it for professional purposes or use in personal life. The ability to minimize or outright stop the impact of cardiac arrest simply cannot be overstated, regardless of the scenario. BLS certification, however, provides additional benefits for those in career fields where certain liabilities, risks, and the need to save patient’s lives are perpetually present. Below are the top-5 benefits procured by obtaining a BLS certification:
Current and updated knowledge of modern life-saving practices and techniques.
Increased confidence in yourself as a lifesaver and as a person; translates to better quality interactions with vulnerable patients in-need.
Enhanced value as an employee in any field; translates to increased promotion and salary potential.
Improved on-job performance for healthcare field and first-responder employees.
Reduced burnout in the intensely demanding healthcare field due to increased confidence in your knowledge and ability to save lives.
Obtaining your BLS certification also provides additional benefits. Your ability to put practical and important skills to use is constantly present. BLS certification also improves your ability to perform fundamental CPR when choking, drowning or other applicable emergency scenarios apply. Your constant state of preparation also helps make a better impression on employers, co-workers, and patients alike. Finally, exhibiting the qualities and ambition necessary to obtain a BLS certification puts your care, compassion, and concern for other human beings on full display. This also boosts your value and the impression you make on everyone around you.
Comparing BLS and CPR Training
CPR is perhaps the most common type of essential life-saving technique known to people worldwide today. CPR is taught as part of BLS certification training but does not comprise the entirety of BLS courses by any means. The emergency lifesaving procedure known as CPR is often initiated when a patient’s heart stops beating. Performing CPR immediately helps increase survival percentage by between two-hundred and three-hundred percent.
BLS certification programs include CPR training in addition to wound and burn care, treating fractures and dealing with various types of poisoning. BLS training programs also include the study of emergency scenario assessment education, precautionary applications in such scenarios and potential legal ramifications of your actions. Essentially, BLS programs are comprehensive and cover many lifesaving techniques and protocols, while CPR training focuses solely on cardiovascular resuscitation.
Types of BLS Certifications
Various levels of BLS certifications are available today. Many training institutions offer multiple types of programs to help accommodate the needs of a wide variety of students and their career needs and goals. For one example, the American Heart Association (AHA) supports and approves of all three different BLS certification programs as provided by CodeOne Training Solutions, LLC (located around the U.S. East Coast and more).
CodeOne instructor-led BLS programs provide hands-on training and experience to students. Graduates receive an eCard, which serves as official verification the certificate was obtained. The CodeOne Beacon BLS program allows students to study and train online in a self-paced environment via a proprietary Heartcode program. The CodeOne BLS Virtual Live Instructor program allows students to train with a live instructor, albeit online from the comfort of their own homes. Additional courses and topics taught by CodeOne and multiple other high-quality BLS training organizations might include:
CPR for infants, children and adults.
BLS-specific AHA Chain of Survival components.
Proper early use of automated external defibrillator (AED) devices.
Creating viable ventilations utilizing barrier devices.
Benefits of cooperative team efforts pursuant to multi-rescuer resuscitation and CPR.
Choking (foreign-body airway obstruction) relief for infants through adults.
How to Get a BLS Certification
BLS certification is available to any person willing and able to successfully complete the training. Some career fields require employees to possess a BLS certification as a condition of hiring, however. Healthcare providers along with nursing and medical students must obtain BLS certifications. Police officers, firefighters, paramedics, and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) workers must also possess BLS certifications. Additional career fields requiring BLS certification as a condition of hire include:
Begin the process by searching for training facilities and/or online options in your area. Applications are typically accepted online although some facilities require in-person meetings as well. Classes often include up-to twelve students and include manikin device proficiency training. This type of training follows industry-standard guidelines, utilizing a 3:1 or 2:1 student to manikin ratio. Once you successfully pass all required courses you will receive your BLS certification card. Your card remains valid for two years from its date of issuance. Every two subsequent years you will be required to update your certification status.
BLS Certification – Overview of Costs
Obtaining a BLS certification is quite affordable in modern times. While costs vary between programs nationwide and internationally, prospective students should expect to pay between only $60 and $80. Certain companies even reimburse employees for the costs of this training once successfully completed. A few of the best organizations offering BLS certification programs today include: