Basic Life Support

Health care providers are faced with daunting tasks each day – all revolving around patient care. Cardiac emergencies are very common, one of the most common conditions that are brought into the emergency room. As a health care provider, it is part of your duty to know how to manage cardiac arrest and other cardiac emergencies. Training programs are offered at Lethbridge First Aid through the week; sign up today!

Studying BLS: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is the first line management for cardiac emergencies, specifically cardiac arrest. In cardiac arrest, the heart stops beating completely or beats very slowly. Chest compressions will help manually beat the heart to send blood circulating in the body. Out of the hospital, the most a first aid responder can do is perform chest compressions and give rescue breaths (mouth-to-mouth resuscitation). This is what you will learn in a Basic Life Support program at Lethbridge First Aid.

In depth into BLS

Basic Life Support training teaches basic cardiopulmonary resuscitation for out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. We prepare students to manage victims of cardiac arrest without medical equipment or guidance. This basically involves two things: (1) chest compressions and (2) ventilations or rescue breaths,


  • When giving chest compressions to adults, compress the chest by a third of the anterior-posterior diameter – which is usually 2 inches.
  • Perform chest compressions with two hands in the middle of the chest, fingers interlaced. Position hands between the nipples, on the sternum.
  • Push hard and fast!
  • After 30 compressions, give two breaths.

Rescue breaths

  • Rescue breaths are given by tilting the head back, opening the mouth, and pinching the nose.
  • Seal your mouth over the victim’s and blow. Watch for the chest rise and fall in between breaths.

Recognizing Cardiac Arrest

Cardiac arrest is the sudden stop in a person’s heartbeat. It can be caused by a variety of reasons, usually pre-existing cardiac problems such as Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). When a person gets a heart attack, he or she may or may not feel severe chest pain. Other symptoms include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Lack of a detectable pulse
  • Irregular or no breathing at all
  • High blood pressure
  • Nape pain and upper chest pain

Pre-existing cardiac problems are the leading morbidities in almost every country in the world. If you have the following risk factors, you have a higher chance of developing a heart condition.

  • Diet high in fat, cholesterol, and sodium
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Lack of regular exercise
  • High intake of alcohol
  • Vices, specfically smoking

Must-know regarding BLS training

  • BLS program length is 4.5 hours.
  • BLS recertification is 4 hours long, also offered at Lethbridge First Aid.
  • BLS certificates are valid for three years and can be renewed through a recertification class.

Enrollment is quick and simple! Just use the form below to start your application process. Just fill in your personal details and details of the program you want to take; we will receive your request immediately after submission but we will only be able to process it during business hours, from 8 AM to 5 PM.