To follow the theme of National Home safety month and to highlight the National CPR week (June 1st to June 7th), this week’s free money Friday will talk about how to get free CPR training and AED training. Performing CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) can double or triple a person’s chances of survival, yet only around 32% of cardiac arrest victims receive CPR from bystanders as they are not comfortable giving one. Even if you have to pay $100, it is well worth the time and money. But you don’t even have to spend money. There are several places you can get CPR training for free, so all you have to do is allot a little bit of your time. Learning to do CPR might save a life one day.
Where to find Free CPR training classes?
Fire department : Our fire department regularly provides CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) classes which includes
- Emergency Preparedness
- CERT Organization
- Disaster Fire Suppression
- Disaster Psychology
- Emergency Medical Operations-One victim
- Emergency Medical Operations-Triage
- Course Review
- Light Search and Rescue Operations
- Disaster Simulation Exercise
This is a 21 hr certification program. You can choose to attend just one session, but you won’t get the certification (if that is important to you). Example : LA county fire department CERT classes, San Francisco Fire department. Start with your fire department, call and check if they offer CPR classes.
Emergency management department : Some counties have this as part of the fire department, some have a separate emergency management department which includes the paramedics and emergency medical response team. They offer free full schedule class or sidewalk classes.
Local hospitals : Most hospitals offer free CPR training as part of parenting classes. A lot of them offer it for a small fee, but during special occasions like the National CPR week, hospitals offer free CPR/AED classes supported by American Heart Association(AHA).
American Red Cross : American Red Cross usually partners with local hospitals or fire departments to offer free CPR/AED/first aid training, but they also offer classes in their local Red Cross offices. Check the American Red Cross training page to find a class near you – Red Cross take a class.
American Heart Association : Similar to Red Cross, they usually partner with local hospitals to offer free CPR training. But contacting the American Heart Association might save you some time instead of contacting all the local hospitals. AHA might be able to give you a list of hospitals near your place that offers this training. This week might be a good week to ask around. There will be a lot more free classes than usual.
Employers : This depends on the employer of course, but a lot of employers offer free CPR/fire safety clinics to their employees. If your employer does not, it might be worth while to ask them. They might arrange for one (it reduces their cost of health insurance a little) or might reimburse you the fee for the class. Update : NoDebtMBA says – “My college provided free CPR and first aid classes when I was in undergrad. It’s good knowledge to have.” Good idea. If you are a student, check with your student center/health center to see if they offer the training.
Online CPR classes : This is a last resort, just-in-case-of-emergency training. I am not a fan of online CPR classes as I can never be fully confident that I am doing it right. After all it is someone’s life that I am playing with. One of the previous options should definitely work out for you. In the rare event it didn’t, online CPR classes are better than nothing. There are a ton of free ones out there. I like this one the best – University of Washington LearnCPR.
I think it is good to learn CPR/AED and basic first aid. I was planning to take the CPR course from our local community college but I found out that the LA county classes are much more comprehensive. I have enrolled myself for the CERT class. We never know when we might need to use that skill. I hope never, but if I need to, I prefer to be prepared. Please take some time to learn these basic skills this June. Even if you have to spend some money… some things are worth it!
Read all the Free Money Friday posts here – Free Money Friday