CPR Certification Or BLS Certification?

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certification and basic life support (BLS) certification – what’s the difference?

These two types of CPR certifications can cause a great deal of confusion for people who need a certification for their career. And if you enroll in the incorrect certification class, you may risk having to take the class again.

So how can you avoid wasting 4 hours of your day sitting in the wrong class? Read on!

Here’s the deal… Both CPR and BLS are types of CPR certifications. This is what confuses the majority of the people:

BLS Certification

BLS for the Healthcare Provider is a more advanced level of CPR than a standard CPR class. BLS is a certification through the American Heart Association (AHA) and is required for all medical personnel. This includes:

  • Doctors
  • Nurses
  • Emergency medical technicians (EMTs)
  • Firefighters
  • Paramedics
  • Dentists
  • Medical Assistants
  • And many more!

BLS requirements differ by state and area. But Southern California, including Orange County, Los Angeles, San Diego and Riverside County, recognizes BLS through the AHA as the most widely accepted certification.

CPR Certification 

CPR (typically called community CPR) is the certification that is geared toward non-medical personnel. It also may be called “layperson CPR.” This course is the most basic version of CPR.

It is important to know what type of layperson CPR you are getting because there are many variations. The most inclusive certifications will cover adult, child and infant CPR, automated external defibrillators and conscious and unconscious choking. Also, make sure your certification is valid for two years as well.

So there you have it! BLS is for healthcare providers, CPR is for everyone else. I can’t speak for the rest of the world, but if you’re a healthcare professional looking for an Orange County CPR certification, make sure you enroll in a BLS certification class!

How to Find the Right CPR or BLS Certification Class 

Many CPR and BLS certification classes are available, but finding the right one often proves to be a major challenge for medical and non-medical professionals alike. Luckily, we’re here to empower you with the skills and insights needed to find the perfect CPR or BLS certification class in no time at all.

Ultimately, there are many factors to consider as you evaluate local CPR and BLS courses, including:

  • Location – Many students prefer classes at a campus location. As such, students may want to enroll in CPR and BLS certification courses that are close to home.
  • Schedule – Does a CPR or BLS certification class fit your schedule? Ideally, you’ll want to find a course that ensures you won’t have to revamp your everyday schedule and allows you to learn various life-saving skills at your convenience.
  • Instructors – Typically, you should try to find a CPR or BLS certification course that is taught by advanced medical personnel and have performed CPR in real life. These instructors will be able to share their CPR and BLS expertise with you and respond to your concerns and questions at any time.
  • Reputation – Does a CPR or BLS certification course provider boast a proven reputation? If not, you may want to evaluate alternatives to ensure you’re able to receive extensive CPR or BLS training.

At SureFire CPR, we understand that there is no shortage of CPR and BLS certification classes in Southern California. To differentiate ourselves, we strive to provide students with superior lessons. By doing so, we’ve been able to teach a large assortment of students about CPR, BLS, first aid and more.

We even offer a combination of hands-on and classroom lessons to help students find out what it takes to deliver critical assistance in emergencies. Plus, with our state-of-the-art equipment and technologies, students can reap the benefits of an outstanding learning experience at all times.

Enrolling in our CPR and BLS classes is fast and easy, too. To learn more about our CPR and BLS course offerings or to sign up for a class today, please contact us at (888) 277-3143.


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Showing 4 comments
  • Lauren Foster

    I have a question!! If I currently am certified in HeartSaver CPR (layperson) and need BSL for Healthcare Providers, can I take a re-certification BSL course? If the answer is YES it would make my life a whole lot easier… but I’m guessing it’s NO!
    Thanks for any help!

  • SureFire CPR

    Hi Lauren!

    Unfortunately you will need to take the BLS class for Healthcare Providers. Where are you located? If you are anywhere in Southern California, maybe we can make your life a little easier by giving you a discount on one of our classes. Please write back and let me know what city you’re in. I hope you have a great day!


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