The American Red Cross Basic Life Support (BLS) course is designed to train healthcare professionals including nurses, physicians, EMS professionals, and other healthcare and public safety personnel to respond to breathing and cardiac emergencies in adults, children and infants. Content in this program is consistent with:
- The International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR) 2021 International Consensus on Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care Science with Treatment Recommendations
- The American Red Cross Focused Updates and Guidelines 2020
- The BLS program content was updated to include policy statements, evidence reviews and guidelines from:
- American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
- American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP)
- American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG)
- American College of Surgeons (ACS)
- American Heart Association Emergency Cardiovascular Care (AHA ECC)
- Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care (CoTCCC)
- Obstetric Life Support™ (OBLSTM)
- Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) and the American
- College of Critical Care Medicine (ACCM)
- Surviving Sepsis Campaign (SSC)
Created with the latest information available, our BLS classes allow you to learn life-saving techniques and can help prepare you for a career in the medical field, as a police officer or firefighter or another career where caring for others is part of the job.
BLS Classes for the Way You Learn
- In Person: Led by best-in-class instructors, our in-person courses combine lecture with hands-on skills sessions. Created for those who learn best in a traditional classroom setting, our in-person classes give you the time you need to learn the information presented, ask questions and become comfortable with the hands-on skills you'll need to pass your BLS certification exams.
- Blended Learning: Using a combination of self-paced, interactive online BLS classes and in-person skill sessions, our blended learning program gives you the ability to train on your schedule, improve your clinical decision-making skills, learn the latest science-based protocols, then demonstrate your skills to a certified instructor.
What You'll Learn
In order to help you respond safely to a range of medical problems, our BLS class schedule includes coursework in:
- Rapid Assessment and Visual Survey
- CPR/AED for Adults, Children and Infants
- Obstructed Airways
- Opioid Overdoses
- Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, Communication and Teamwork
- The Emergency Medical Services System
- Legal Considerations
Certification Made Simple. Fast. Easy. Digital.
When you take a BLS class from the American Red Cross, and earn BLS certification, you'll get anytime, anywhere access to Red Cross Digital Certificates, as well as the ability to print, share, and download your certificate wherever and whenever you like. Digital certificates can be viewed, printed or shared online and can be accessed anytime through your Red Cross Account. Each certificate includes a unique ID and a QR code which meets employment requirements and allows employers to easily confirm your certificate is valid. Class participants and employers can visit https://www.redcross.org/take-a-class/digital-certificate and enter the ID found on the digital certificate (or scan the QR code with a standard QR reader using a smart device) to access a copy of the valid certificate with student training information.
Click here for instructions on accessing your certificate.
What is the difference between BLS vs. First Aid?
- Basic Life Support (BLS) is the foundation of resuscitation training for healthcare professionals including nurses, physicians, EMS professionals, and other healthcare and public safety personnel. BLS program content includes single-and multiple-responder CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and AED (automatic external defibrillator) use, as well as how to care for a patient who has an obstructed airway (choking).
- The Red Cross First Aid/CPR/AED portfolio of courses has been the go-to program for thousands of businesses and training organizations for over a century. These programs are the foundation of safety training and our courses satisfy OSHA-mandated, workplace and other regulatory requirements.
BLS vs. CPR: What is the difference?
- When lives are on the line, it is critical that healthcare and professional responder staff have the skills and confidence to act in the moments that matter. Red Cross Basic Life Support (BLS) is meant for healthcare professionals and first responders. This comprehensive, evidence-based curriculum goes beyond a cardiac focus, making our programs unique and more robust. Red Cross BLS courses meet competency verification, education, credentialing and privileging requirements.
- CPR classes are the foundation of workplace safety training, giving immediate responders a mastery of lifesaving techniques and the confidence to act when moments matter, be the cardiac emergency be at home, at school or in their community.