What does BLS stand for? It’s essentially the immediate care given by first responders, and healthcare providers in an emergency situation to someone experiencing cardiac arrest. Emergencies can happen anytime and anywhere. Even those who work in the medical field are not immune to experiencing accidents and injuries. That’s why it’s crucial to learn how the basic life support skills sessions for healthcare providers. Below, we share the basic life support sequence for victims in an emergency.
Note that while these steps are practical, it is still a better idea to enroll in a BLS for healthcare workers course to get valuable basic life support training and obtain your Basic Life Support certification. With Basic Life Support (BLS) knowledge, you can respond promptly in life-threatening emergencies.
Step #1: Scene Safety
Before you even give BLS to a victim, ensure you are in a safe environment for both you and the victim.
Step #2: Check Responsiveness
If there is no response from the victim, do the following:
- Call for help nearby.
- Call the emergency response unit.
- When alone, prioritize calling 911, the emergency response unit and securing the AED(automated external defibrillator) before resorting to CPR for adults and children.
- When someone is with you, tell them to call the emergency response unit and fetch the AED for you. Never leave the victim unattended as much as possible.
Step #3: Assess Breathing
First, check for breathing signs in the victim. Then, take 10 seconds to check their pulse. If the pulse and breathing are stable, continue to monitor until professional help arrives.
Step #4: Abnormal Breathing
When the breathing of the victim is abnormal, do the following:
- Give rescue breaths. The ratio should be one breath every five seconds.
- Call the emergency response unit after two minutes of rescue breathing.
- Continue to give rescue breaths and check the pulse every two minutes. If there is still no pulse present, begin doing CPR steps.
Step #5: No Breathing and Pulse
When the victim is not breathing and there is no pulse, do the following:
- Begin administering high-quality CPR. The compressions-to-breaths ratio should be 30 chest compressions followed by two rescue breaths.
- Check the victim’s pulse every two minutes. Additionally, check for switch compressors and rhythm.
- Use an AED when possible. If there is a shockable rhythm, do defibrillation and start CPR immediately.
- Remember that high-quality CPR and changing places with another bystander every two minutes will improve the victims’ chances to survive.
Guideline Changes in administering BLS
In the past decade, a few changes were made in the standards of administering BLS.
- Checking the pulse and breathing should now be made in less than ten seconds.
- When a cardiac arrest happens because of an initial non-shockable rhythm, administer epinephrine whenever possible.
- Give education on opioid overdose, which can be alone or paired with naloxone training and distribution.
- For pregnant victims, a manual left uterine displacement would be more beneficial in alleviating the aortocaval compression when chest compressions are made if the height of the fundus is higher than the umbilicus.
Conclusion- Steps in Giving Basic Life Support
These are just some simple steps when administering BLS for healthcare providers. There are more detailed steps that you should learn to provide quality rescue to victims properly. You can learn this by enrolling yourself in a proven and tested online BLS course.
If you’re concerned about your ability to respond in an emergency, you should consider getting your BLS certification. Taking a BLS training class will help sharpen your skills and give you the skills you need to save someone’s life if you find they’re in danger. Join the American Health Care Academy today!