AHA BLS for Healthcare Providers

We know you want your child to be safe, so many of our teachers are AHA BLS and First Aid certified.  If an emergency does occur, we will call 911 first and then contact the parent.

Basic Life Support (BLS) is generally identified with Emergency Medical Technicians-Basic (EMT-B). However, the American Heart Association's BLS protocol is designed for use by certified first responder, and healthcare professionals. It includes cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, drowning, and foreign body airway obstruction (choking). EMT-B is the highest level of healthcare provider that is limited to the BLS protocol.

The algorithm for providing basic life support was published in the journal Circulation by the American Heart Association (AHA).

The AHA uses four-link "Chain of Survival" to illustrate the steps needed to resuscitate a collapsed victim:

  • Early recognition of the emergency and activation of emergency medical services
  • Early bystander CPR, so as not to delay treatment until arrival of EMS
  • Early use of a defibrillator
  • Early advanced life support and post-resuscitation care

Bystanders with training in BLS can perform the first 3 of the 4 steps.

Basic Life Support 2012 Guideline

Steps in resuscitation are now DRS C-A-B in this sequence

- Check for Danger

- Check for Response

- ‘S’ has been added for Send for help

- ‘A’ directs rescuers to open the Airway

- ‘B’ directs rescuers to check Breathing but no need to deliver rescue breaths

- ‘C’ directs rescuers to perform 30 Compressions to patients who are unresponsive and not breathing normally, followed by 2 rescue breaths

- ‘D’ directs rescuers to attach an AED as soon as it is available and follow prompts

The major change is that in the patient who is unresponsive and not breathing CPR commences with chest compressions rather than rescue breaths. If unable to perform rescue breathing, then perform compression-only CPR, as any attempt at resuscitation is better than no attempt; and should be encouraged.

• Key changes in basic life support, reflecting the new science from the 2010 American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care

• Critical concepts of high-quality CPR

• The American Heart Association Chain of Survival

• 1-Rescuer CPR and AED for adult, child and infant

• 2-Rescuer CPR and AED for adult, child and infant

• Differences between adult, child and infant rescue techniques

• Bag-mask techniques for adult, child and infant

• Rescue breathing for adult, child and infant

• Relief of choking for adult, child and infant

• CPR with an advanced airway*

* This is an introduction to the compression/ventilation rate and ratio for a patient who has an advanced airway in place. For more information on advanced airways, please refer to the Airway Management Course.