AHA Guidelines

2020 guidelines

Instructor Update Requirements for Instructors and AHA Faculty

All AHA Instructors and Faculty must complete their required Instructor Update(s) by February 1, 2021, to continue teaching or overseeing AHA courses. Instructor Updates will be available in the following disciplines: BLS, ACLS (for ACLS and ACLS EP Instructors), PALS, PEARS, and Heartsaver. An Instructor Update must be completed for each discipline taught. For example, AHA BLS Instructors must complete the BLS 2020 Instructor Update, and those BLS Instructors who teach Heartsaver® courses must also complete the Heartsaver 2020 Instructor Update. For PALS Instructors who teach PEARS®, completion of the PEARS 2020 Instructor Update is recommended, but not required. 

Transition Timeline:

Teaching 2020 AHA Guidelines Courses Using New Materials All AHA Instructors and Training Centers will have until February 1, 2021, to begin teaching the new, 2020 Guidelines healthcare courses (BLS, ACLS, PALS) using new materials. To introduce AHA Instructors to the new courses and materials, the AHA will offer complimentary, online Product & Course Orientations for BLS, ACLS, and PALS. These orientations will also be available to Instructors and TCCs through their access to the AHA Instructor Network.

Interim Guidance for Continuing Training

We want to emphasize that between the release of 2005 AHA Guidelines and the release of new products, Training Centers should continue to offer courses using the current materials. It is critical that Training Centers continue to provide courses to everyone that needs training in the healthcare, corporate and public environment.

The new guidelines do not imply that the use of earlier guidelines is either unsafe or ineffective. This includes the use of 15:2 CPR and AEDs that are designed to conform to those guidelines. The AHA recommends that people receive retraining in CPR at least once every two years. People should continue to perform CPR in the way that they were last instructed.

Local EMS and hospital protocols are determined by the medical director of those respective healthcare systems and may be changed by those authorities at any time. If an EMS system or hospital may opt to implement 30:2 CPR at any time.

In late January/early February, instructors and Training Centers will receive bridged materials that will help them to integrate the new science into the current course materials. New textbooks and videos that reflect the new guidelines will begin to be available throughout 2006. As they are released, the American Heart Association will announce the new materials to instructors and Training Centers.

To access the 2020 American Heart Association Guidelines for CPR and ECC, click on the link below.

2020 American Heart Association Guidelines for CPR and ECC

AHA Disclaimer

The American Heart Association strongly promotes knowledge and proficiency in BLS, ACLS, and PALS and has developed instructional materials for this purpose. Use of these materials in an educational course does not represent course sponsorship by the American Heart Association, and any fees charged for such a course do not represent income to the Association.