Best Online CPR Certifications

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Online CPR certifications are earned through courses that provide training on medical emergencies, such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation. They are available online to meet the needs of those who wish to be qualified in professional emergency response. The courses contain information about how to respond to different emergency situations using CPR and defibrillation. The best online CPR certifications teach emergency assistance skills and help give civilians a foundation for dealing with life-threatening situations such as sudden cardiac arrest, which claims the lives of approximately 475,000 Americans each year.

While there are many CPR certifications online, it’s important to pay attention to the quality and accreditation of courses instead of simply considering the price. Accreditations (official endorsement regarding a program's value) through organizations such as the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Red Cross and may be more widely accepted by employers and schools. Additionally, many online companies don’t provide thorough information about their classes and some may be scams. We've compiled a list of the best online CPR certifications that we believe to be of high quality and worth consideration.

Best Online CPR Certifications of 2022

Best Overall : American Red Cross


Key Specs
  • Price: $35
  • Duration: 2 to 3 hours (on average)
  • Accreditation: Red Cross; OSHA-compliant
Why We Chose It

The American Red Cross makes quality CPR training convenient and affordable. It has long been a reputable organization in the U.S., and its CPR courses are comprehensive and up-to-date.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Online and in-person training options

  • Available via mobile, desktop, or tablet

  • Multiple class options available

Cons
  • Must enroll in additional instructor-led skill session for OSHA certifications

  • No customization or add-on options

  • Available only in English

Overview

The American Red Cross is a trusted nationwide CPR certification provider originally established more than 100 years ago. With a substantial history of delivering critical services to the U.S., it has been recognized as a qualified CPR training provider by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Its extensive courses deliver professional instruction for all levels of expertise, including guidance on infant, child, and adult CPR.

Best for CPR Certification Renewal : ProMed


Key Specs
  • Price: $35
  • Duration: 2 hours (on average)
  • Accreditation: None; Follows American Heart Association (AHA) and International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR) guidelines
Why We Chose It

ProMed offers a CPR certification renewal course that is both affordable and accredited. The course also is available online with CPR, basic life support (BLS), advanced cardiac life support (ACLS), and pediatric advanced life support (PALS) options.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Nationally accepted

  • Unlimited exam attempts

  • Continuing education credits offered

Cons
  • Platform isn’t as user-friendly as other options

  • Lacks visual learning aids

Overview

Created by licensed medical professionals, ProMed is a national provider of CPR certifications and recertifications. It offers online CPR certification renewal courses for CPR, ACLS, PALS, BLS, AED, and first aid. Standard CPR recertification starts at $35, with PALS and ACLS options for $129. All courses feature continuing education credits and are available for instant online access. You can attempt the exam an unlimited number of times until you pass and will receive your certification card immediately, which is valid for two years.

Another feature is its ProMed Flex Expire model, which allows you to choose the date (within 30 days) you would like your certification to begin. This can be especially helpful for those who need to renew their certification close to the expiration date. With no time limit on course completion, you can study at your own pace and complete the exam when you're ready. Overall, reviews on the provider’s website show that 97% of ProMed students rated their experience 4 or 5 stars.

Best for Comprehensive Program : Sim Med


Key Specs
  • Price: $199
  • Duration: 3 hours via Zoom
  • Accreditation: AHA
Why We Chose It

Sim Med offers a comprehensive AHA CPR program that covers ACLS, PALS, and BLS in a fast-paced, one-day zoom course.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Mimics in-person CPR training

  • No additional skill test required

  • Easy online booking

Cons
  • More expensive than our other picks

  • Lacks on-demand learning options

  • Must schedule a date to attend the course

Overview

Sim Med is an authorized AHA provider of CPR and ACLS courses. It offers a one-day zoom class that covers all three levels of CPR (infant, child, and adult). Topics include life support skills for healthcare providers, airway management, cardiac emergencies, and more. Its team of experts is experienced in teaching CPR courses and preparing students for success on the certification exam. The course is $325 and does not require an additional skill session to receive a certificate. There are no prerequisites, and you can complete the course for both initial certification and renewal.

Sim Med's trainings are live, delivered over Zoom. You'll need to schedule a session through its online scheduling system and be present for the entire duration of the class. Once you pass successfully, you’ll receive an AHA CPR certification card, valid for two years and available to download immediately.

Best for Beginner Basics : Pro CPR


Key Specs
  • Price: $39.95
  • Duration: Self-paced; 4 hours 33 minutes of video
  • Accreditation: None; Follows AHA and Emergency Cardiovascular Care (ECC)/ILCOR guidelines
Why We Chose It

Pro CPR features CPR and first aid courses that follow AHA and OSHA guidelines. Its video-based training is self-paced and available on desktop, tablet, and mobile devices.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Blended course options available for hands-on practice

  • Test challenge option for CPR renewals

  • Weekly refresher video

  • Available in English and Spanish

Cons
  • Follows AHA and ECC/ILCOR guidelines, but no official accreditation

  • Not all employers will accept

Overview

Offering online CPR and first aid training since 2003, Pro CPR is a great option for beginners looking to take a basic self-paced course that covers CPR and first aid for infants, children, and adults. From treating acute injuries and illnesses to learning about AED use, Pro CPR's classes are designed to give you the knowledge necessary to handle common medical emergencies. Both English and Spanish versions are available, and students may be eligible for up to eight continuing education credits upon completion.

Pro CPR is accepted nationwide and follows AHA and ECC/ILCOR guidelines. With unlimited exam attempts and a test challenge option for CPR renewals, this two-year certification is a great value. The student manual for each course can be downloaded easily from the course page, and lessons are available on desktop, tablet, or mobile devices. With the options to order a manikin for hands-on practice or attend in-person training, this company provides convenient course customizations for its users. Reviews on the provider’s website average 4.6 out of 5 stars.

Best for Child & Infant CPR Training : Tinyhood


Key Specs
  • Price: $19
  • Duration: 30-plus minutes
  • Accreditation: None; Follows AHA guidelines
Why We Chose It

Tinyhood offers courses with parents in mind, featuring child and infant CPR training that is simple, easy to follow, and affordable.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Videos are short and informative

  • Printable infographics for each skill

  • Offers a scholarship program for those who can't afford

Cons
  • Course access expires after 2 years

  • Most likely won't be accepted by employers

Overview

Tinyhood offers a variety of pediatric courses taught by expert certified instructors, ranging from CPR to first aid and choking. Its online program is a great option for parents and caregivers who want to be able to confidently handle emergencies when they arise. With video demonstrations and a simple, easy-to-follow interface, TinyHood makes learning straightforward and fun. Plus, the company offers a scholarship program for those who can't afford the full price.

Best for Healthcare Providers : American Heart Association


Key Specs
  • Price: $32.50
  • Duration: 1 to 2 hours for online portion plus 1 to 2 hours for in-person skills session
  • Accreditation: AHA
Why We Chose It

The AHA is the largest provider of CPR training and has been for more than 50 years.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Accepted by healthcare employers worldwide

  • Nationally accredited

  • Locations in all 50 states

Cons
  • Requires an in-person skills session with an AHA instructor

  • Must complete online portion prior to in-person skills session

Overview

The AHA has been the world's largest provider of CPR training for healthcare providers for more than 50 years. With more than 18,000 locations worldwide, chances are there's an AHA training center near you. Its online courses are accepted by employers and healthcare institutions nationwide.

Best for CPR & First Aid : Heart CPR


Key Specs
  • Price: $95
  • Duration: Self-paced; 2 to 3 hours for online portion plus 1 hour for skills session (optional)
  • Accreditation: AHA
Why We Chose It

Heart CPR Training offers one of the most comprehensive first aid and CPR courses available, with multiple course offerings designed for both healthcare professionals and nonprofessionals.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • No in-person session required for general certification

  • Add-on course options for customized learning

  • Guaranteed employer acceptance or a 100% refund

Cons
  • Zoom session with live AHA instructor required for AHA certification

  • Fewer continuing education units (CEUs) than other options

  • Course access expires after one year

Overview

Heart CPR offers comprehensive CPR and first aid training for healthcare professionals and the general public alike. With over 15 years of training experience, its expert staff consists of physicians and critical care nurses who have first-hand knowledge of how to handle emergencies. The combination CPR/AED/First Aid course covers everything from basic CPR skills to handling critical emergencies like a heart attack. The $75 price tag includes an optional zoom session with a real-life AHA instructor to certify under the American Heart Association's guidelines.

There are no prerequisites for taking its courses, and a two-year certification is available instantly. If your employer doesn't accept Heart CPR, it offers a 100% refund within 60 days. The innovative on-demand training platform allows you to review the material as many times as you'd like and provides helpful quizzes to ensure you're ready for the final exam. If multiple certifications are needed, students can combine the zoom webinar for BLS, ACLS, and/or PALS into one convenient session.

Heart CPR has an average 4.93 out of 5-star rating in reviews on its website and is continually expanding course options to meet the demands of customers.

Best on a Budget : National CPR Foundation


Key Specs
  • Price: $12.95
  • Duration: 15 to 25 minutes (on average)
  • Accreditation: None; Follows AHA and ECC/ILCOR guidelines
Why We Chose It

National CPR Foundation offers budget-friendly courses on CPR, first aid, and AED with options to pay after passing the test, making it the top choice for affordable CPR certification.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Lowest price point out of all the courses we reviewed

  • Curriculum created by AHA-trained providers

  • “Skip to exam” option for those who have prior knowledge

Cons
  • No hand-on skill session offered

  • Employers may not accept it

  • No continuing education units (CEUs) offered

Overview

National CPR Foundation helps more than 100,000 people learn essential emergency care skills each month. With its online courses, CPR training takes as little as 20 minutes and certification is valid for two years. Its user-friendly platform makes navigating the curriculum effortless, and you’re able to take the final exam via multiple device types. The company claims to have an exceptionally high national and international acceptance rate of 99.7%.

You can complete the course and final exam in one sitting or multiple sessions, depending on your schedule. If any technical difficulties arise while completing the course, an email support team is available 24/7 to help troubleshoot the problem and get you back on track.

The $12.95 price point is the lowest we found, with multiple course offerings to choose from. The curriculum was created by AHA-trained providers, and certification can be printed instantly while you wait for your official copy by mail. You even can delay payment until after you've passed the final exam, meaning you won't spend a dime until you're ready.

National CPR Foundation has an average rating of 4.87 stars out of 5 from more than 200,000 customers on its website.

Final Verdict

There are many online CPR certification courses available, and we've highlighted the best of the best. Companies like National CPR Foundation offer budget-friendly courses, while the AHA offers a BLS course for healthcare professionals. Overall, the best CPR certification we reviewed is through the American Red Cross with its user-friendly course, low price point, comprehensive curriculum, and exceptional reputation for emergency preparation training.

The American Red Cross has long been a leader in first aid, CPR, and AED training for both the general public and healthcare workers. With more than 140 years of experience creating lifesaving curriculums that are constantly updated with current medical evidence, it's no wonder its courses are popular. The company offers dozens of high-quality CPR classes online to help people prepare for emergencies in their own home, school, workplace, and community.

Compare the Best Online CPR Certifications

Company Pricing Duration Accreditation Certification Validity Length
American Red Cross
Best Overall
$35 1 hour 47 minutes (self-paced) Red Cross (2 years, 18 months, etc.)
ProMed
Best for CPR Certification Renewal
$35 1 hour None; follows AHA and ILCOR guidelines 2 years
Sim Med
Best for Comprehensive Program
$325 3 hours via Zoom AHA 2 years
ProCPR
Best for Beginner Basics
$39.95 4 hours 33 minutes of on-demand video (self-paced) None; follows AHA and ECC/ILCOR guidelines 2 years
Tinyhood
Best for Child & Infant CPR Training
$29 30+ minutes (self-paced) None; follows AHA guidelines 2 years
American Heart Association (AHA)
Best for Healthcare Providers
$31 for online portion + $70 for in-person skill session 1–2 hours for the online portion + 1–2 hours for in-person skills session AHA 2 years
Heart CPR
Best for CPR & First Aid
$75 2–3 hours for online portion (self-paced) + 1 hour for skills session (optional) AHA 2 years
National CPR Foundation
Best on a Budget
$12.95 15–25 minutes (on average) None; follows AHA and ECC/ILCOR guidelines 2 years

Guide for Choosing the Best Online CPR Certifications

Is Online CPR Certification Right for You?

Online CPR certifications have become more popular in recent years as convenient and accessible options. Fortunately, more employers are beginning to accept online CPR certifications as valid proof of proficiency.

Online certification can be completed in as little as 20 minutes and is widely available through numerous vendors. This makes it a great option for busy people who may not have the luxury of time during the day to sit in a classroom. Most can be started and stopped at any time, helping parents complete CPR certification while their children are napping. Some even offer the ability to receive AHA certification, the most popular and accepted CPR certification in the United States. If your place of employment requires certification, check with your supervisor or HR department to see if online courses are an acceptable option.

Comparing Online CPR Certifications 

When choosing an online CPR certification, consider these factors:

  • Cost: Decide how much money you're willing to spend on certification. Generally, courses that offer accreditation cost more than those that don't. If your employer offers reimbursement, determine how much they'll contribute.
  • Accreditation: Many employers require specific accreditation based on the industry or position you work in. Ask your employer if a specific certification is required before signing up for an online CPR certification. Make sure the company you choose for training is accredited and meets the requirements and standards of your company or organization.
  • Curriculum: When choosing a CPR certification, make sure it is up to date with current medical findings and recommendations from approved organizations like the AHA. Additionally, verify that the information is presented in an easy-to-follow manner that is simple for you to remember.
  • Time commitment: Many courses can be completed in 90 minutes or less, with most offering the ability to instantly print your card. Determine how much time you have to dedicate to online CPR certification and pick a course that works within your schedule.
  • Additional skill test requirements: Some courses require an additional skill test (in-person or online) in order to receive certification. This is especially true for AHA-accredited programs. Check the requirements of the course to make sure you can complete the necessary testing. If there is an in-person component, verify whether there is a local testing center before signing up.
  • Device Compatibility: If you don't have a computer or internet access at home, select a course that is compatible with mobile devices. Many courses are offered in mobile form, making it easy for you to complete your training on a tablet or smartphone. You'll still need access to internet connectivity to stream video and take the final exam.
  • Company reputation: It's crucial to ensure the program you choose is reputable. Look online for customer reviews and testimonials.

How to Sign Up for Online CPR Certification

Before signing up for an online CPR certification course, identify your priority. Consider which accreditations and certifications are required for your job, school, or other organization. For example, the American Red Cross offers some of the most affordable and comprehensive online CPR certification courses available today. The AHA is another great option that has a long-standing reputation for excellence in emergency education and training for healthcare providers.

Most CPR certification courses have their own websites where you’re able to register directly. The above courses can all be accessed immediately upon signing up. For some, you may have to schedule a separate Zoom or in-person skills session after completing the coursework and exam.

Upon successful completion with a passing grade, CPR certification cards are available to print instantly. Most courses also send a physical certification card to your home within 10 business days. The majority of platforms allow you to log into your account at any time to review coursework, refresh your knowledge, and download a CPR card.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Do Online CPR Certifications Cost?

The cost of online CPR certifications varies by provider. Typically, costs start at as little as $13 and can reach $300 or more. There often are discounts available for bulk purchases, group training, and AHA certification packages.

Is Online CPR Certification Valid? 

An increasing number of employers are beginning to accept online CPR courses as a legitimate form of certification. However, check with your supervisor or HR department before registering for a course, just in case there are specific accreditation requirements. Some employers have strict guidelines around the types of CPR certifications they will accept.

While online certifications are a convenient way to learn CPR, It’s important to do your research on the specific company you plan on using before registering. Not all courses are created equally, and some may have lower standards than others. Do your due diligence to ensure the company you choose is reputable and has a good reputation for producing quality training materials.

The most reputable and widely accepted CPR certification programs have official accreditation from either the American Heart Association or the American Red Cross. This simply means that the course content has been reviewed and approved as meeting certain standards for CPR education. Some employers look for specific accreditations to meet their own employability requirements. Check with your HR department or supervisor to learn more about the accreditations they are looking for in a CPR certification course.

Can You Do CPR Certification Online? 

Most online CPR courses can be completed online within a few hours. Certifications are even available on mobile devices, which makes it easy to complete certification from almost anywhere.

It’s crucial to find a reputable program with high standards. The AHA and the Red Cross are two of the most popular providers of online CPR certification courses. These organizations have a long history of providing quality training materials and excellent customer service.

How Is Online CPR Certification Different From In-Person? 

There are a few key differences between online and in-person CPR certification. First, online courses typically offer more flexibility in terms of when you can complete the training, which is great for people who have busy schedules or other obligations. Additionally, most online courses offer comprehensive materials that can be reviewed at any time. Finally, with access to 24/7 technical support, you can get the help you need any time of day.

Methodology

Our methodology for evaluating online CPR certification courses is comprehensive and unbiased. We looked at dozens of different programs before picking the most reputable companies whose programs met our stringent qualifications. A variety of factors were considered, including price, coursework, and customer reviews. We then reviewed how each course compares to in-person training options, and lastly, factored in accreditation. The most common accreditations come from the American Heart Association and The American Red Cross. CPR certifications that have official accreditation from one of these two organizations are generally considered more trustworthy than those that do not.

Only CPR certification courses with an exceptional combination of pricing, accreditation, coursework, and customer reviews made the list. When making our decisions, we put a special emphasis on course content and usability. Since CPR is a lifesaving skill, access to high-quality courses with minimal hassle is critical.

Edited by Brian Abbott
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  1. American Heart Association. CPR facts and stats.