What’s Keeping You from Learning Basic and Advanced Life Support?
Most people think that their lives are safe and protected but accidents can happen at any time. Picture this: you and your family are traveling by road. All of a sudden, your husband clutches his chest and falls over. You stop the car on the highway and you know that he's had a sudden heart attack. After all, he did have high blood pressure. Now you are stuck in the middle of the road with no one helping you. What do you do?
This is where emergency medical help can be critically important. After any type of medical emergency, the first few minutes are vitally important. You should have started CPR which would have ensured a continued circulation, started up breathing and cleared the airway. This would have ensured that blood supply would have continued to different parts of the body. In fact, the AMA and the AHA states that immediate CPR or basic life support after any type of injury can actually reduce deaths by as much as 10%. The problem arises with the fact that very few people are actually interested in learning basic life support. According to AMA statistics, only 3% of the American population is aware of basic life support procedures. This percentage is woefully insufficient and the AMA regularly creates awareness campaigns, which encourage civilians to take up basic life support classes.
However, this is not enough. If civilians are encouraged to complete BLS or basic life support classes, medical professionals should also take up advanced classes to help in case of emergencies. As a result, most hospitals and medical colleges ask their staff and paramedical personnel to complete advanced emergency classes like ACLS and PALS classes. These classes are usually offered through the AHA and are completed at local hospitals and nursing homes. We've created a simple guide that should help you understand the range of courses that are offered for lay people and for medical professionals. You can learn more about ACLS certification online.
Types of emergency medical courses
1. Basic life support classes will teach students how to carry out CPR and maintain breathing and circulation till emergency technicians arrive. The course is simple and it can also be done online. After completing the course, the student has to pass a written exam. The practical exam is optional for civilians. Before they sit for the exam, they will have to complete a skills class that is taken separately for the BLS certification online.
2. Advanced cardiac classes are only for medical professionals. The class is referred to as the advanced cardiac life support class and it is taken through classroom training. It is usually two days long and it comprises a theory and practical component. The student will have to sit for the exam online or at a classroom and then clear it. A minimum score of 84% is required to pass and the certificate is mailed to the student after two weeks of scoring. For ACLS recertification online, the student can apply for the ACLS online renewal through approved websites. The ACLS renewal process is very simple as it involves taking the course again.
3. Pediatric advanced cardiac care courses accept medical and paramedical personnel who deal with children and infants on a day-to-day basis. The course builds on existing medical knowledge and a pretest is required for entry to the course. After completing the course, the student can apply for PALS certification online through accredited websites.
Important points to note
1. The BLS course is open to civilians and to medical professionals. After completing the theory course, participants are encouraged to attend the skills class. This class is done separately. The skills class is optional but we do recommend that you take it in order to learn how to do CPR on a dummy.
2. Advanced ACLS courses are presented in a classroom but a few online ACLS classes are also offered through special websites. Please verify the credentials of the site before joining the course.
3. The ACLS, PALS and BALS certifications are only valid for two years. This is because treatment protocols and medications change regularly. Course content is updated and students have to recertify themselves through ACLS certification online websites.
4. The ACLS and the PALS course are open only to medical and paramedical professionals. To ensure that your medical knowledge is current, the instructor will test your knowledge through a pretest. The pretest is mandatory.
5. BALS certification online courses are not mandatory for medical professionals. However, the course will help you brush up on basic skills.
You should also know that you can easily find BLS, ACLS and PALS courses through the AHA website. It will also provide detailed information about the duration and cost of the course. You should know that completing basic and advanced emergencies courses could save the life of your loved one or even a stranger. And it just takes about 2 hours to complete the basic course through an online format. Why take a chance? Do the BLS, ACLS or PALS course and be protected.