For anyone that is interested in working as a nurse in the United States of America, having a CPR certification for healthcare providers is the bare minimum that will be expected from you by any employer.
The reality of working as a professional nurse in America is that they are held to much higher standards than the general public when it comes to CPR certification. We are unaware of any employers who do not require some sort of basic CPR certification in order to be employed.
Depending on the employer and the population that you are serving, they may actually make it a requirement that you need a more advanced level of CPR certification that goes beyond just the basics of life saving.
In addition to learning the technique of how to administer CPR, the basic level of certification for a healthcare provider includes bigger picture stuff.
So not only will those certified with the accreditation have their memory refreshed on how to perform CPR when they are on their own, but they will also learn life support skills, how to efficiently assess serious emergencies, and the correct AED techniques and timings.
This builds upon what was learned when completing the basic certification but pays more focus on the types of cardiovascular incidents that can lead up to a full-blown cardiac arrest.
Given that heart disease is now one of the major causes of death in the whole of the United States of America, many employers now require this level of certification from their employees also.
Nowhere is this more true than for those healthcare providers working in the cardiology field, as well as those working in ERs, urgent care facilities, and trauma centers.
As part of the process of gaining this accreditation, learners are taught how to recognize and then intervene in stroke, acute dysrhythmia, post-cardiac arrest, acute coronary syndromes, and even cardiopulmonary arrest.
Renewal of Certification
Both the basic and advanced CPR certifications for healthcare providers need to be renewed every two years. The reasons for this are that:
- Most professional nurses do not use the skills that they learn from their accreditation on a daily basis and so their knowledge and ability to administer CPR correctly wanes over time. If they are not doing it all of the time then even the professionals can get rusty with their technique. This is why a refresh every two years is a good idea as it ensures that their skills, knowledge, and techniques are at the front of their mind as possible, thus helping them to better save lives.
- The guidelines produced by the American Heart Association that set out how to do CPR are updated frequently as their knowledge about it changes and as research shapes new techniques or practices. This means that within the space of two years, things can change a lot and the accredited practitioner may not be aware of fundamental changes made to the guidelines, thus impacting their ability to save lives.