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What do I Need to do to Become CPR Certified?

Mary McMahon
Updated Feb 27, 2024
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Certification in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) is very easy to obtain, and it is well worth getting CPR certified. In some jobs, it is actually a job requirement, so certification will make you more appealing to an employer. It's also just a useful skill to have, as you may be able to save a life or improve a patient's prognosis by acting quickly and performing CPR in an emergency situation.

Getting CPR certified is important because it ensures that you know how to perform CPR properly. It is possible to seriously injure someone with poorly performed CPR, and no one wants to do that, even if it is by accident. CPR certification can also be useful if you end up being taken to court, and it can even protect you from legal action in some cases. Any good class will teach you basic safety and first aid techniques as well, and some classes also cover simple legal issues such as good Samaritan laws which may be useful for you to know about.

Many service organizations such as the Red Cross offer classes for people who want to become CPR certified, and you may also be able to obtain certification through a local hospital or clinic. Call around your local health providers and charities to see if they offer CPR certification and when their next class is scheduled. Expect to pay a small fee for a class which typically lasts several hours, and possibly longer if you would like certification in basic first aid as well. First aid certification can be really useful, so it's worth taking it if it is offered.

In a CPR certification class, you will learn CPR through a mixture of lecture, video demonstrations, and hands-on practice with a dummy or mannequin. You will be taught to assess and stabilize a victim, and you will also learn about basic safety techniques to protect yourself and your patient from harm. You can also get CPR certified for infant CPR and other resuscitation techniques, usually for an additional fee.

Once you are CPR certified, you will be presented with a small card to carry in your wallet. Some classes also give out complementary masks and safety kits for people to carry with them. You will need to periodically renew your CPR certification with follow-up classes. This ensures that you are up to date on advances in CPR and changes in CPR protocol, and it ensures that you have the best training possible to assist someone in need.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGeek researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By anon46548 — On Sep 26, 2009

who said we had to get certified?

By anon19905 — On Oct 21, 2008

What are you called when you are certified to give cpr? a cprist?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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