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Posted July 17, 2020

AHA Training Memo: Instructional Changes during COVID-19 Outbreak (published July 1, 2020): Click here to download. 


AHA Update: July 7, 2020

2020 AHA Guidelines for CPR & ECC

Dear Global AHA Training Network,

The American Heart Association is pleased to announce that the official 2020 American Heart Association Guidelines for CPR & Emergency Cardiovascular Care (2020 AHA Guidelines for CPR & ECC) will be published online in the AHA’s flagship journal, Circulation, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020.

We are keenly aware of the challenges the AHA Training Network is continuing to face due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. As you serve on the frontlines of saving lives, and in this unprecedented time of physical distancing, the way you deliver CPR and ECC training is evolving. As we work toward the October publication, we are closely evaluating the implications of the new Guidelines on the way we deliver information and training to improve cardiac arrest survival and outcomes – and the impact it has on you and the customers you train.

As the global source of the official resuscitation science and education guidelines used by training organizations, the AHA is moving forward with releasing 2020 Guidelines to ensure our Training Network and providers are up-to-date on the very latest resuscitation science and education available. We believe it is critical for the Training Network and providers to remain informed about resuscitation science and education updates because we know that high-quality CPR is the primary component in influencing survival from cardiac arrest. To save more lives, healthcare providers, first responders, and lay rescuers must be competent in delivering high-quality CPR. Additionally, our resuscitation training helps patient care teams acquire the skills and knowledge they need to be both coordinated and competent as they work together to improve outcomes for patients.

Our AHA Training Network is our most valuable resource in disseminating the latest lifesaving science and instruction to providers. Therefore, we are committed to ensuring our Training Network receives Guidelines materials first, when the science is published. We’re pleased to announce the following materials will be available in English on October 21, with the launch of 2020 Guidelines: 

  • All-new AHA Guidelines Website 

  • 2020 AHA Guidelines for CPR and ECC Digital Reprint 

  • Highlights of the 2020 AHA Guidelines for CPR and ECC (in 17 languages)

  • 2020 AHA Guidelines Science In-Service eLearning Course 

Learn more about the Guidelines process by viewing resources on our ECC Digital Digest pagein the “ILCOR and the Guidelines Process” section.

Much more information will follow in the coming weeks. In the meantime, thank you for your continued dedication, expertise, and passion. Our mission to save lives through CPR and ECC training is not possible without your work every day.

American Heart Association CPR & Emergency Cardiovascular Care 


AHA Update: May 21, 2020

Interim Guidance on Card Extensions during COVID-19 Outbreak

Dear Global AHA Training Network,

Beginning in early March, to provide additional flexibility for providers, AHA Instructors, and AHA Training Centers during the COVID-19 pandemic, the AHA issued extensions for AHA Instructor and Provider cards beyond their recommended renewal date, initially for 60 days, then to 120 days. Over the last 3 months, to support you during this challenging time, the AHA has also released guidance on additional precautions, options for healthcare and Heartsaver courses, CPR guidelines, just-in-time ventilation modules for healthcare providers, and is temporarily allowing virtual training through guidance to our Training Center Coordinators.

As the COVID-19 pandemic evolves and Training Centers may be more able to return to training providers and Instructors using options provided by the AHA, we are issuing clarification and updates for card extensions as outlined below.

  • Those with AHA Provider and Instructor cards that expired in March and April, and those with cards expiring at the end of May and June can renew their card for up to 120 days from the recommended renewal date on their card. See below for specific recommended renewal and extension dates:

Recommended Renewal Date on Card (end of month)  New Renewal Due Date with 120-day Extension (end of month)

March 2020                                                                         July 2020

April 2020                                                                            August 2020

May 2020                                                                             September 2020

June 2020                                                                             October 2020

  • Beginning in July, we will resume normal timelines for renewing cards. Those with cards expiring at the end of July should plan to renew their cards by the recommended renewal date on their card (July 2020). 

  • However, for those who may be in affected areas with restrictions still in place into July, Training Centers, at their discretion, may consider extending July cards past their renewal date, for no more than 120 days. 

  • As always, AHA TCs are responsible for following the instructions from their local government or public health authority as it relates to actions around COVID-19. In accordance with the guidelines released by local government, the leadership of the TC should use discretion to evaluate the risk of disease transmission in their area before organizing any training events and take necessary precautions to avoid transmissions.


The AHA continues to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and evaluate options for delivering resuscitation education while taking the proper precautions. Our top priority is the safety of both AHA Instructors and learners.

We know that high-quality CPR is the primary component in influencing survival from cardiac arrest. To save more lives, healthcare providers must be competent in delivering high-quality CPR, and patient care teams must be coordinated and competent working together effectively. Although COVID-19 is certainly our most immediate threat, we must remember the ever-lurking dangers of heart disease and stroke – which, year in and year out, are the top two killers worldwide.

As a reminder, the AHA offers many options to help meet your training needs and the needs of your learners. During this time of social distancing, our blended learning or self-directed learning may be good options for your organization. Consider offering blended learning courses such as the AHA's HeartCode program for BLS, ACLS, and PALS, or Heartsaver First Aid CPR AED blended learningfor non-healthcare providers. Students can complete the online portion of the course and then complete their skills session separately when it is convenient. Self-directed learning and skills competence can be obtained with social distancing outside the classroom with the AHA’s HeartCode Complete and RQI (Resuscitation Quality Improvement) programs for healthcare providers.

We remain committed to serving you as trusted resource to allow for the continuance of safe, high-quality CPR training, as feasible. Thank you for everything you are doing during this challenging time.

American Heart Association

For more information on CPR training, click here.

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