A Guide to Understanding BLS (Basic Life Support) and How it Can Save Lives

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A Guide to Understanding BLS (Basic Life Support) and How it Can Save Lives

Introduction: What is BLS (Basic Life Support)?

Basic Life Support is a certification that teaches CPR and AED (automated external defibrillator) use to lay people and healthcare providers alike. It is a way for people to learn how to save lives in emergency situations when breathing or circulation stops.

The goals of BLS include:

  • Delivering high-quality chest compressions to promote circulation to the brain and other vital organs
  • Becoming knowledgeable of when and how to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED)
  • Providing rescue breathing
  • Understanding how to work within a resuscitation team
  • Treating a choking victim

BLS is the foundational course in life support training. That is why many employers in the healthcare field require their employees to get BLS certified.

The Basics of BLS and the Simple Steps to Saving a Person’s Life

Understanding BLS
Rescuer demonstrates hand placement for chest compressions on a child.

The BLS Assessment is the first step when responding to a cardiopulmonary emergency and is the first line of response in the Chain of Survival before advanced care becomes available. The BLS Assessment consists of 5 important steps:

  1. Determining scene safety.
  2. Checking if the victim responds to vocal commands or taps on the shoulder or feet.
  3. Shouting for help and/or activating the emergency response system.
  4. Checking for breathing and a pulse.
  5. Performing CPR.

Basic Life Support is the first thing to do when someone suffers from a cardiac arrest. If they can be resuscitated before EMS arrive, they will have a better chance of survival as well as mitigating long-term damage to the heart.

What are the Best Resources for Learning About and Practicing with Basic Life Support?

Understanding BLS
A laptop, smartphone and stethoscope on a white surface.

Medical ProCerts has created an AHA-compliant Basic Life Support certification course and exam that is taken entirely online. The course materials include up-to-date algorithms, study materials, instructional videos and practice tests—all to help you prepare for the final exam. The exam is also online, and a successful completion means you are immediately issued your BLS certification provider card!

Sign up and get certified today!

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