CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) is a life saving skill that sadly only about half of Americans know how to perform. ‘Why should I get trained’ so many people ask. Many people think that they don’t have the time, money or need to get trained, but like many things, it’s not only just about you, it’s also about your community and your loved ones.
There are many different levels of CPR training. At the simplest level there is hands-only training (where you do just compressions for someone needing CPR) or Friends and Family CPR which is an informal and very fast method for getting trained. Both of these methods can be conducted all online or through an interactive video. There is no official certification card that participants get after the training, but they will still have the knowledge and skills to be able to help. Next, there is Lay-Responder or ‘Heartsaver’ CPR training which is meant for those who are not healthcare professionals but still want or need basic or entry-level CPR certification. Nearly all CPR courses that are taught for certification are valid for two years and will also discuss how to provide breaths for patients and how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED) to shock the heart if it is needed. For healthcare professionals, there is the Basic Life Support, or BLS class which is a bit more specific and in-depth compared to the lay responder courses. There are even highly advanced life support courses (ALS, ACLS, PALS, PEARS are some examples) that may be required for specialty or emergent healthcare workers.
CPR training, especially if it is hands-only or Friends and Family level CPR, can be learned very quickly. Often times local fire stations, police departments or healthcare workers may offer free or reduced training that can be completed in about an hour or less. There are a host of resources offered if you search for it or look at any reputable CPR training organizations resources.
Knowing how to perform CPR is a huge benefit to the community. The more people who know how to act in an emergency situation, the better off that area will be. Survival rates for cardiac arrest are higher when by-stander CPR is performed quickly prior to EMS arrival. Not only this, but if something happens to you, if you want the best chance of survival, you want everyone around you to know what to do in case of an emergency so they can help you.
Many employers for various jobs either prefer or require a candidate to be certified in CPR. Nearly all jobs in healthcare require this, educators, childcare providers, coaches and more simply must know CPR to even be considered for a job. For others where it is not required, being able to say that you are CPR trained shows that you have initiative to help others and complete extra training on your own time.
Knowing CPR can help change the world. You could save the life of someone you’ve never met before, or it could be the life of someone you love or someone you care about. It’s inexpensive, easy to learn, looks great on a resume and improves your community, so instead of asking ‘why should I get trained in CPR?’ the better question is, why not?