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EMS Instructor Coordinators

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Updated CPR Guidelines Published!!

07 Nov 2017 12:03 PM | Dena Smith
The American Heart Association published updated CPR Guidelines today in cooperation with the International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR).

The 2017 AHA Focused Updates on Adult and Pediatric Basic Life Support and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Quality emphasize that more people will survive cardiac arrest if the following three recommendations are acted upon:

  1. Emergency dispatchers provide chest-compression only CPR instructions over the phone
  2. Children (pre-pubescent) should receive, at a minimum, chest compressions; however, rescue breaths should be provided if the bystander is willing and able
  3. Bystanders start immediate chest compressions if they see an adult collapse in a suspected cardiac arrest 

With these updates, ILCOR and AHA are moving to a continuous evidence review and more frequent focused updates. Continuous evidence evaluation allows the rigor of a comprehensive review and expert consensus in as close to real time as possible. Previously, AHA Guidelines for CPR and ECC had been updated every five years.

For these 2017 Focused Updates, there will be no changes to AHA products, and no new materials are required.

Instructors and Training Centers should note that the AHA recommendations for EMS-delivered CPR have been updated and now provide more flexibility:

  • Instructors may allow students to practice synchronous or asynchronous ventilations during chest compressions in courses (BLS Provider, ACLS Provider, and ACLS for Experienced Providers) consistent with the student’s local protocol.
  • However, for testing purposes, Instructors will continue to use the BLS Skills Testing Checklists and the Skills Testing Critical Skills Descriptor, which tests by using the 30:2 compression-to-ventilation ratio with pauses in chest compressions to give ventilations. Instructors must test students performing the skills test based on what is on the skills checklist.

Cardiac arrest is survivable with the initiatives that AHA supports. Intervention works. 

For more information, visit the ECC Guidelines website or the AHA Instructor Network.

Thank you for everything you do to contribute to the mission of saving lives! 


It is the mission of the Society of Michigan EMS Instructor Coordinators to promote the growth and development of EMS education by supporting EMS educators through advocacy, professional development and training.

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