Elegant senior man with heart attack symptoms sitting on the road emergency medical service workers trying to help him. Driver assistance service.

Why Medical Professionals Should Get Life Support Certifications

The medical fields and industries include a vast number of specializations. Given that medical professionals spend most of their life studying medicine and their specialties, it takes years, as well as tremendous effort, determination, and patience to become truly capable. 

Some pieces of this training are so crucial, most medical facilities require their doctors and nurses to maintain up-to-date certifications on it. I’m speaking of life support, which can help you to be prepared in a cardiac emergency, such as a heart attack or stroke.

These skills will be helpful to you as a medical professional if you plan to work in hospital settings such as in emergency rooms, cardiac care units, and other medical areas that require you to have life support certification.

What is Life Support Certification?

Life support certifications are short training courses taken by medical professionals who work in clinical health, public safe, and more. They’re also commonly taken by coaches, lifeguards, and some teachers.

There are three common types of life support certification that you can take:

  • BLS (Basic Life Support): In this course, you’ll learn simple life-saving skills for resuscitating, reviving, and sustaining a person’s life in emergency conditions such as respiratory failure and related breathing problems. The training includes a variety of techniques including chest compressions, rescue breathing, utilization of automated breathing defibrillators (AEDs), and more.
  • ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support): ACLS training is the advanced and more sophisticated form of BLS. This training program steps up the basic lessons covered in BLS training. These lessons include clinical interventions used for life-threatening cardiovascular emergencies such as stroke, cardiac arrest, and myocardial infarction.
  • PALS (Pediatric Advanced Life Support): PALS training is intended for healthcare providers who primarily work with children or infants, and may need to respond to a cardiac emergency in that context.

If this information about life support certifications doesn’t convince you enough, this article summarizes the top reasons why you, as a medical professional, should get certified.

Be Emergency-Ready At All Times

Medical professionals are equipped with a variety of skills and knowledge learned from years in medical school. While life-saving techniques are definitely taught in med school, taking a specialized course that focuses only on life support will supplement that knowledge because of the targeted curriculum.

Furthermore, these life support certifications aren’t just applicable in the professional setting. Heart disease is the number one cause of death worldwide, so you may well find yourself in a situation where you’re putting this knowledge into practice to save the life of a friend, family member, or even a complete stranger.

In other words, you can provide people with critical medical assistance even when you’re not wearing your uniform. You may be at home, on vacation, or at the grocery store but you can still help people who are fighting for their life because you’re prepared at all times.

Study Real-Life Scenarios

Life support courses offer general lessons about medical emergencies, but there are certain certification courses that narrow down to case-based studies for more efficient learning. For instance, the ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) certification offered by the American Medical Research Institute has a targeted ACLS curriculum where students can choose their own specialty tracks. Depending on your medical setting, you can select between:

  • Pre-Hospital ACLS,
  • Hospital ACLS, and
  • Non-Hospital ACLS.

With this more targeted approach to your coursework, you can make sure you learn more about how to apply the life support techniques in the same environment you’ll be working in. 

Improve Professional Reputation

Being certified can help to boost your reputation if you’re a new entrant to the medical field. Knowing that you’ve allotted extra time and effort to take BLS and ACLS courses, this certification will appeal to employers who would’ve required you to take it anyway, as well as your patients, current or future.

In case these life-threatening conditions happen to a patient admitted to your institution, your knowledge about life support will yield two positive results: saving the patient and making a great effect on your reputation, not to mention your hospital’s social reputation.

Adds Value To Your CV

During your job application, your curriculum vitae will be extremely crucial to the success of your application. Your CV can inform and impress your employer by displaying your educational and professional accomplishments. Having your life support certification will be a great first impression to your hiring managers and will help to demonstrate that you take your career seriously and are ready to get to work in a critical healthcare environment.

Moreover, most institutions offering BLS and ACLS certifications are accredited by national and international institutions – so you don’t need to worry about these certifications not transferring if you plan on moving from one area to another.

Challenge Yourself With Multitasking

Along with studying in med school, finding a new job, or even working in a medical institution, it is still possible to obtain your life support certification course since these courses can also be taken online. You don’t need to take time off or stop earning. In fact, you can take these courses while you continue with your current career.

You can access online BLS, ACLS, or PALS courses anywhere you have an internet connection. Most programs are self-paced as well, so you can learn at your own pace and test when you feel prepared. In this way, you can maximize your learning with your experience since they’re highly correlated.

Final Thoughts

As a medical professional, perhaps one of the greatest contributions you can offer the world is the power of saving people’s lives. As a medical professional, your profession is aligned with this endeavor, and by earning your BLS or ACLS certification, you can be sure you’ll be able to respond appropriately if faced with a cardiac emergency.