Times are scary right now. Times are tough. Nearly every industry, including training, is scrambling to figure out best practices and how to continue operating safely. The training industry is extremely important as it provides the necessary knowledge, skills, abilities and qualifications for many employees and employers in a variety of occupations. But how do you train when you have to worry about social distancing, CDC recommendations, stay at home orders and more?! Luckily the industry leaders of the American Red Cross, American Heart Association, American Safety and Health Institute and others have come up with a variety of options so that instructors can continue training while students and employers can continue getting the courses and certifications that they need.
One option is completing the training 100% online. Though this doesn’t always give participants an OSHA or ‘approved’ certification generally, it does grant the knowledge needed to make a difference in case of an emergency.
A second option has been around for a while, but will become one of, if not, the primary delivery for CPR training during the Covid-19 crisis and foreseeable future. It’s called blended learning. The concept is simple, students can view all of the course videos and even take the written tests at home on their time. Upon successful completion they can then schedule a brief skill session to show their practical skills to obtain their certification card. Many training companies are exclusively offering this and no longer half and full day in-person training to help adhere to social distancing recommendations. Skill sessions often are only about an hour long and can be scheduled 1 on 1 with an instructor who will remain a safe distance away.
A brand new option that is starting to catch on is virtual skills delivery. This takes an online or blended class session where the student takes the course at home and allows the in-person skill session that is needed for certification to be administered virtually. FaceTime, Skype, Zoom and other meeting apps are all acceptable ways to connect a student and instructor so that the instructor can verify the students physical skills and go over any questions they may have. The biggest problem with this is that students must have access to a manikin and other training supplies to participate. Fortunately several industry leaders have stepped up to offer this service, including HeartCert.
Though Covid-19 has changed nearly every industry, especially that of training, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t get the life saving skills of CPR, AED or First Aid and it certainly doesn’t mean you don’t have any options. Online, blended learning and virtual options give nearly everyone an opportunity to stay safe and get CPR trained.