One way that many are opting to enter the medical field is by becoming ACLS (Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support) certified, in order to assist patients experiencing issues of the heart, such as strokes or cardiac arrest. Certification is typically done online, through the official ACLS website or from other institutions recognized by the American Heart Association (AHA). These courses are made available to all those willing to put in the effort to become certified, not just medical professionals. Here is an overview of the certification course options.
Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) Certification
Of the American Heart Association’s certification pathways, ACLS is probably the most well known by the general public. Its purpose is to teach those in the medical field how to aid patients who are having respiratory or cardiovascular issues. Those who work in intensive care or in emergency response units are required to take part in this training. After completion of the program, your certification stays valid for two years. Certification costs $275 through the ACLS website and $175 to become recertified.
Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) Certification
The training and skill set required for the PALS certification is very similar to that of ACLS, however it is aimed at those working with children. Pediatric resuscitation can be difficult, as many of your patients will have fragile skeletal systems that are still being developed. Since children have a different set of possible medical issues than adults do, PALS certification is much more specialized. Much of the focus of this training is placed on properly operating defibrillators, making airways accessible, and demonstrating CPR on infants and children. Certification costs $275 through the ACLS website and $175 to become recertified.
Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP) Certification
Once again, NRP continues in the same tradition as the other ACLS certification programs, but its patients have just been born. Those with NRP training are typically present at the birth of a child, ensuring that the newborn has the necessary development to lead a healthy upbringing. If something should go awry, they are they have the responsibility attached to being the first responders, determining how to improve the child’s physical state. NRP certification requires a score of 80% or above on the examination, while candidates are able to retake the test as many times as they like. Certification costs $275 through the ACLS website and $175 to become recertified.
Basic Life Support (BLS) Certification
This is the most common certification pathway, because it requires the least of its candidates. Serving as an entry-level, Basic Life Support certification is popular with people outside the medical field because it develops skills that can be used in commonplace situations. These include preventing choking, CPR, and teaching children proper safety habits. Many employers require this level of certification upon entering a career, so that employees are able to manage and prevent hazards within the workplace. Certification costs $95 through the ACLS website and $65 to become recertified.