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What Is Basic Life Support (BLS)?

Updated: Oct 19, 2021

The question, “what is basic life support,” refers to the level of medical care that is given to victims with life-threatening injuries or illnesses until they can be transferred to a hospital to receive full medical care. When a person’s heart stops beating (cardiac arrest), people with basic life support training can improve their chance of survival.

When asked the question, “what is basic life support,” many people get it confused with cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The truth is, CPR is only one of the lifesaving skills used in BLS. Basic life support is non-invasive and does not involve giving medication.

What Is the Aim of Basic Life Support?

The purpose of BLS is to maintain sufficient blood circulation and breathing through a clear airway. If you are responding to an emergency, having a basic life support certification will assure the patient that you are qualified to help them.

What Is Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers?

The SureFire BLS course, basic life support for healthcare providers, covers CPR, use of an automated electrical defibrillator (AED) and relieving choking safely and effectively. It is recommended for EMTs, RNs, Dentists, MDs and other medical personnel.

What Is Basic Life Support Certification?

Basic life support certification provides evidence that an individual has undergone basic life support training. Having basic life support certification streamlines communication with other responders in an emergency situation because it tells them what procedures you are, and are not, qualified to perform.

When someone has basic life support certification, it shows that they know how to perform chest compressions that pump blood around the body to keep the tissues and brain supplied with oxygen.

Who Needs Basic Life Support Certification?

While basic life support certification for healthcare providers is required for people in the medical profession, people in other professions may find themselves suddenly in a position where they need to use basic life support. These professions include bus drivers, teachers, babysitters, lifeguards, firefighters, police officers, pharmacists, caregivers, foster parents, physiotherapists and others.

In fact, since nobody can predict when someone they are with is going to choke or go into cardiac arrest, just about anybody who works with the public may find it useful to obtain a basic life support certification.

The SureFire BLS course provides basic life support training and leads to a two-year initial basic life support certification by the American Heart Association. After a 3 hour BLS class, you will never need to ask, “what is basic life support” again!



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