Over our many years working in the online medical certification field, we’ve encountered a number of myths and misconceptions, particularly when it comes to first aid, CPR and BLS (basic life support). Some of these mistruths are minor, but others could potentially lead to further injury or other more serious consequences. As such, we’d like to set the record straight and debunk some of these common myths once and for all.
If you perform CPR wrong, it could be deadly.
Obviously, knowing the right techniques for delivering first aid and resuscitation is always favorable, but that doesn’t mean you should stand idly by if you aren’t certified. It’s better to perform some form of CPR – even if it’s not done exactly the right way – than to do nothing at all. In fact, the American Heart Association strongly recommends that compression-only CPR be performed by untrained bystanders if necessary as a tool to “buy time” until the arrival of emergency medical personnel.
You might contract HIV/AIDS by performing CPR.
Many people feel nervous about performing CPR, particularly administering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, because they’re concerned that doing so will place them at a greater risk of contracting HIV/AIDS. Keep in mind that these diseases can only be spread via direct contact with blood, semen or vaginal fluids. For those who are still concerned, there are special barrier devices that can be used. Alternatively, performing compression-only CPR is still better than not administering care at all.
CPR always works.
This myth has been perpetuated by movies and television shows which depict positive outcomes from most life-saving attempts. Unfortunately, in real life, resuscitation attempts don’t always have such happy endings. In fact, the actual success rate for adults is somewhere between 5 and 10 percent. This is largely dependent on how quickly first aid is administered following the victim’s initial incident. Nevertheless, performing CPR can still dramatically improve survival rate.
You could get sued for performing CPR.
Many people are worried that providing emergency medical intervention via first aid, CPR or other means could potentially result in a lawsuit. Provided that you act prudently and reasonably in your resuscitation efforts (which is typically the case for most individuals administering life-saving aid), you will be protected from any legal issues by Good Samaritan laws. One should never let fear of backlash prevent them from potentially saving someone’s life.
Becoming CPR or BLS certified requires a bunch of long, boring and expensive classes.
The last myth we’d like to bust involves the idea that obtaining a medical certification for first aid and life support means you’ll have to waste a ton of time and money sitting in a classroom. To the contrary, with online course options, you can become CPR, BLS, ACLS and PALS certified from the comfort and convenience of your own home or office and according to your schedule. What’s more, online courses are also much more affordable than traditional options.
To learn more or to enroll in one of our online medical certification courses, click here.