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Consider becoming an AHA BLS Instructor to guide others in implementation of the 2015 CPR / ECC updates or take advantage of more frequent training intervals, with use of feedback devices and manikins that can optimize performance of CPR.  

For information on instructor training, please click here.

The term Chain of Survival provides a useful metaphor for the elements of the ECC systems concept.  Recognizing the unique contributions of both lay rescuers and health care professionals, new system-specific chains of survival were created for out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCA) and in-hospital cardiac arrests (IHCA):


​The 5 links in the Adult In-Hospital Chain of Survival are:

  • Surveillance and prevention
  • Recognition of cardiac arrest and activation of the emergency response system
  • Immediate high-quality CPR 
  • Rapid defibrillation
  • Advanced life support and post-arrest care

The AHA recognizes that some communities have benefited from systems in place to notify potential rescuers of a nearby arrest situation in order to hasten the start of chest compressions and initiate the chain of survival. Lay rescuers remain a critical link in the chain of survival, as bystanders of a person in arrest can receive timely assessment tips and CPR instruction from 911 dispatch centers via their mobile phones. 

AHA Basic Life Support (formerly BLS for Healthcare Providers)

The BLS Course trains participants to promptly recognize several life-threatening emergencies, give high-quality chest compressions, deliver appropriate ventilations and provide early use of an AED. In the Instructor-led course, students participate in simulated clinical scenarios and learning stations. Students work with an AHA BLS Instructor to complete BLS skills practice and skills testing. Students also complete a written exam.

The BLS course teaches both single-rescuer and team basic life support skills for application in both prehospital and in-facility environments, with a focus on High-Quality CPR and team dynamics.

• Updated science and education from the 2015 AHA Guidelines Update for CPR and ECC 
• Instructor-led, hands-on class format reinforces skills proficiency 
• Emphasis on high-quality CPR including a team dynamics classroom activity 
• Video-based course with real world scenarios

Course Content

• High-quality CPR for adults, children, and infants
• The AHA Chain of Survival, specifically the BLS components
• Use of an AED
• Effective ventilations using a barrier device
• Importance of teams in multi-rescuer resuscitation and performance as an effective team member during multi-rescuer CPR
• Relief of foreign-body airway obstruction (choking) for adults and infants


The 5 links in the Adult Out-of-Hospital Chain of Survival are:

  • Recognition of cardiac arrest and activation of the emergency response system
  • Early cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) with an emphasis on chest compressions
  • Rapid defibrillation
  • Basic and advanced emergency medical services 
  • Advanced life support and post-cardiac arrest care