How Long Does a CPR Certification Last? A Comprehensive Guide

How Long Does a CPR Certification Last?

Are you wondering how long a CPR certification lasts? We’ll give you the answer here. Having valid CPR certification means you possess the required level of proficiency to administer this life-saving procedure. That being said, it also means your knowledge and skills are relatively fresh, which can make the difference between life and death. 

In fact, according to the American Heart Association, correctly administered CPR can double and even triple the chances of survival after cardiac arrest. 

So, how long does a CPR certification last? Keep reading to learn in detail about the period of validity for CPR certification.

Validity of The CPR Certification

Though there are many certificate providers across the states, they all have one thing in common – the CPR certificate they issue has a validity of 2 years. The key reason for this predetermined time period is the fact that CPR skill degradation occurs only a year after certification for medical professionals and laypeople.

Though you don’t need to possess valid certification to perform CPR, it is a good idea to refresh your training and get re-certified every 2 years. That being said, while the general rule is 2 years, professional standards in certain working environments might require you to renew the certification every year. 

When it comes to the expiration and renewal of your CPR certification, you have to ensure that no more than 30 days have passed since the day of expiry. If you sign up for a CPR course in that time period, then it is considered a renewal. However, if more than 30 days pass, it is no longer recertification, and you will need to go through a full CPR course. 

Factors That Can Influence Validity

Thanks to the widespread influence of the internet, there are many options for a training provider that offers online CPR certification. However, not all of them offer the same training standards. So, while your online certification may be considered valid in most places across the US, that doesn’t mean it fulfills all regulatory requirements.

In fact, when it comes to CPR certification for workplace needs, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not recognize online certification as valid. Moreover, the foremost CPR certification authorities in the country tend not to offer online CPR certification and recertification.

So, not only do you have to pay close attention to the expiry date of your certification, but you also have to be mindful of its source. That being said, if you have a valid CPR certificate in one state in the US and then move to another, the certification will be completely valid up until the expiration date. 

Recertification Of Your CPR Certification

If you notice that your certification has expired or is about to expire soon, the next logical step is to look into the recertification process. In its essence, this process does not differ from the certification one by a lot. You will, once more, be required to take classes and a test in order to confirm that your knowledge of the CPR procedure is satisfactory. 

Depending on the original certification course that you took, the CPR renewal might require you to start from scratch and go through all of the classes once more, or you might be able to take an abridged course version.

Once you complete the required classes for the course, you will be tasked with passing a CPR test in which you’ll have to prove that the scope of your skills is still adequate to save a life. 

Refreshing Your Knowledge to Extend Your CPR Certification

Even if your CPR certificate is not anywhere near its expiration date, it is always a good idea to practice and keep your knowledge and skillset fresh. Per the American Red Cross, CPR skill retention starts fading only a few months after the course and test. This means that about a year into your certification, you might not have the required competency anymore.

Of course, the rules and guidelines suggest that the CPR certification should be renewed every 2 years. However, it might be wise to review it more frequently. The process of keeping your abilities fresh and recent is much simpler now that we have all the materials are readily available online.

Even if you don’t have the necessary equipment that would allow you to practice in the comfort of your home, you do have access to all theoretical materials. All you have to do is look them up online and find a trustworthy source such as a reliable certification agency. Moreover, these agencies oftentimes provide access to online quizzes that are similar to certification tests.

That way, not only can you keep your knowledge and abilities up-to-date, but you can also get a correct estimate of the current level of your skillset.

Reasons to Get Your Recertification

Even if your workplace does not demand it, making sure that your CPR certification is current and valid can be quite useful. The very foundation of all of these reasons is the ability to save and preserve people’s lives. 

However, it is always wise to be aware of the individual reasons, such as legal considerations, medical advancements, and reaction time. 

Medical Advancements For CPR

The medical field is one of constant progress and development. While the basic recommendations for the CPR procedure tend to stay the same, there are occasional changes in the process. It is for this very reason that it is crucial to get recertified every 2 years.

For example, while the recommendation for regular cardiac arrest is to do chest compressions without mouth-to-mouth ventilation, that’s not applicable to drowning or choking victims. Instead, it’s better to do the rescue breathing aspect of CPR as these victims’ primary concern, aside from cardiac arrest, is the lack of oxygen. 

These advancements are made with a singular goal – to better the procedure so that it produces more positive outcomes. By retaking the courses, you can be certain that your knowledge and skillset are completely up-to-date, and you are able to help in the best, most efficient way possible. 

Reaction Time For CPR

Even if you passed your CPR certification course with ease, the ability to react quickly and correctly fades with time. The more recent your CPR certification is, the better your reaction time will be, as the information is fresher in your mind. This is non-negotiable for individuals in fields that require CPR certificates.

Instead of putting yourself in a situation where you are not be able to help save a life, getting recertified will help you stay level-headed and focused. Whether you work at a place where you might be required to administer CPR often, or you simply find yourself in a traffic accident, your awareness and reactiveness can make the difference between life and death. 

Better Job Prospects

Most professional working environments put a lot of stock into safety and security, which is why CPR certification is highly valued. Even if the particular job position you are applying for does not have any connection to first response and healthcare, you could still improve your prospects by getting CPR certified.

Wrapping Up What We Learned About How Long A CPR Certification Lasts

Accidents and emergencies happen when we least expect them, and no one is ever truly prepared for them. However, maintaining a CPR certification means that you are equipped to the best of your abilities to help save a life. A day of fun on the beach can turn into a nightmare if a person drowns, but a recently CPR certified person can help prevent a tragedy.

While CPR certification is not valid forever, it is one of the most valuable documents that you can attain. Keeping this certificate valid means that your skillset is constantly sufficient enough to pass the test, and more importantly, save a person’s life.