4 ways the COVID-19 pandemic is changing CPR education for good…and for the good of all

Is your CPR certification set to expire soon? If so, you might not want to attend in-person CPR classes in the face of the ongoing pandemic. Yet, you don’t want to forgo this valuable life-saving skill training. In fact, your job might even require you to be CPR certified.

Fortunately, training organizations have created some creative solutions so that you can get CPR certified and back to saving lives – safely.

Here are four ways CPR courses might look different this year – and beyond:

  1. Online CPR courses step into the spotlight

    The recent 2020 ILCOR/AHA guidelines updates recommend self-paced CPR courses, like those offered online, as a way to help more people receive or retain certifications.

    Today, with a couple of quick clicks, you can be logged into a professional video course. In addition to COVID safety, this learning format comes with some other perks.

    Want to stop and replay specific parts of the training? Need to pause and resume training because the kids or dog needs your attention? Prefer to take a course late at night, in the middle of the day or some combination thereof? You’re covered. For this type of course, you don’t even need to get out of your PJs!
  2. At-home hands-on training complements online CPR courses

    Opting for a video course doesn’t mean you can’t practice on a real manikin. Companies that deliver online CPR courses can send manikin kits to your home or work location.

    After you complete the online course, you’ll connect with a live instructor via video call to practice CPR on the manikin as the instructor walks you through each step. Some manikins now come equipped with lights that tell you if your compressions are deep enough and properly paced.
  3. Safety measures beef up for in-person CPR classes

    In-person training certainly isn’t going away – it will just look different.

    Previously, CPR classes included up to 15 people usually with two people per manikin. Today, classes have safety measures in place. These may include limiting classes to six people while students social distance, wear masks and practice on their own manikins. You might take a video training first and then meet in person for the manikin training only or you may attend the entire training in this smaller group format.
  4. Virtual reality prepares for the future

    So far, no certified, VR-based CPR training exists but that doesn’t mean it can’t or won’t someday! In fact, the new AHA guidelines hint at this option as well. Virtual reality, along with gamification, may well hold the key to a whole new arena in the world of CPR education.

COVID-19 continues to challenge us all in many ways but may well help us all to allow more people easy access to training to be CPR certified – and that is something we can all feel good about.

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