Pediatric Advanced Life Support

Pediatrics and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation


The management of children is very different from the management of adults. This is true for a variety of health conditions, especially cardiopulmonary conditions. While the basic concepts used in CPR for adults remain the same for pediatric CPR, the pathophysiology behind cardiac arrest in children is very different from cardiac arrest in adults.

Coronary artery disease or CAD is the most common culprit for heart attacks in adults. Genetics play a big role in diseases, but CAD is largely affected a person’s lifestyle. It is caused by a variety of risk factors, usually those that involve lifestyle choices in diet and exercise.

Because of a build up of plaque (deposits of fat and inflammatory cells) in the vessels that supply the heart with blood in CAD, oxygen delivery to cardiac tissue becomes severely compromised. Without oxygen supplying the heart muscle, it contributes greatly to cardiac failure.

The Pediatric Advanced Life Support Program (PALS)


The PALS program offered by Red Deer First Aid is a two-day training course, focusing the advanced management of pediatric cardiac emergencies in a medical setting. It takes a total of 14 hours to complete, not including a separate say and session for the certification exam.

In our PALS program, we teach students cardiac pharmacology, defibrillation, and updates to the CPR and ECC guidelines. These are only a few of the core topics, more are discussed over the span of two days. The management of a variety of cardiac and pulmonary conditions are likewise included in the core curriculum of PALS training.

Red Deer First Aid Training Credentials


A training certificate in Pediatric Advanced Cardiac Life Support expires three years after it is first issued. To receive a new training credential, trainees don’t have to take the PALS program again; they can simply enroll in a PALS refresher class which lasts 6 to 8 hours. Refreshers are available for all of the courses at Red Deer First Aid. After the refresher class is completed, the trainee has to pass another set of certification exams (written and practical) to be awarded a new training credential.

The credentials you are given are valid all over Canada, not just Red Deer. Refresher classes may be taken sooner (but not later) than three years, as well.

Start your training: Pediatric CPR


For infants – perform compressions with two fingers. Press down on the sternum, in between the nipples, 30 times. You can either use two thumbs with hands around the chest or the pointer and middle fingers of one hand. Follow with two rescue breaths using a bag valve mask. Fully squeeze the bag to deliver one full breath. 30 compressions and 2 breaths are considered one cycle; repeat until the child regains consciousness and stabilizes. Every three minutes, epinephrine is given in order to improve blood flow to the heart and brain (through its vasoconstrictive properties).

Signing up for PALS training is as easy as completing the online form below. We will be able to process your application during the next business day; so expect a reply from us by then.

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