Why Your Credit Union Should Offer CPR Classes


Accidents happen every day, so we should always be prepared for the unexpected. In the event that a member or employee has a medical emergency at your credit union, do you have staff who are equipped to handle that?

On average, it takes 7-14 minutes for first responders to arrive at the scene of an emergency once authorities have been called. In a medical emergency, those 7-14 minutes can mean the difference between life or death. Having staff that is CPR and AED certified gives the individual that is at risk those precious extra minutes of life-saving measures.

How classes operate

In the past, CPR and training classes were typically four to five hours long. However, training times have been cut in half and now are only about two hours long because the new CPR method does not include rescue breaths as they have been found to be non-effective. By continuing to give only compressions, we have seen an increase in survival rates. Also, by not having to perform rescue breaths individuals giving CPR are less likely to come into contact with blood or any diseases that may be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact with a person in need of assistance.

Typically, in CPR training an instructor will talk about the procedures, give the trainees information on Good Samaritan Law, have the trainee perform CPR on dummies, and then teach the trainees on how to properly use an AED. Having multiple people certified helps the staff feel confident when they are using their newly learned skills in a life-or-death situation. Many people worry about the possibility of getting tired while performing CPR, especially if first responders are taking longer. Having multiple employees trained it will allow your employees to switch out if need be.

Another benefit of having multiple members trained in CPR is that they can help the individual performing CPR by taking charge of other things besides the CPR like getting bystanders backed up to give everyone plenty of room to work, calling 911, and taking mental notes of other items like what time did the incident occur and how long has CPR been in progress for. Details about the incident are very important for first responders. Furthermore, having multiple staff certified will ensure a trained staff member is always present should others be out of the office.

Should you have an AED?

AEDs are only used in cases where there is no heartbeat, they cannot be used to correct an irregular heartbeat, or for someone with a prolonged heart rate. AED is a smart machine and will read the individual’s body to know whether it can and or should shock an individual. They are relatively new but very common for companies to have in their buildings.

Having an onsite AEDs provides your employees with life-saving technology that can improve survival odds in the event of a cardiac emergency while waiting for emergency medical service staff to arrive. As stated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, using a defibrillator on an individual in cardiac arrest increases the survival rate by 60 percent. Having an AED on site is only the first step, you need to ensure that we have an adequate number of staff members trained to use the equipment.

OSHA guidelines recommend that companies with an AED host a two-to-four-hour training program in both using an AED and providing CPR annually. Best practices say to have approximately 10 people for each AED in the building. If your credit union is smaller or having ten people trained on AEDs does not seem possible, strive to have at least one or two people per shift.

Concern for community

We as credit unions have 7 Cooperative Principles. Cooperative Principle #7, Concern for Community, states “While focusing on members’ needs, cooperatives work for the sustainable development of the communities through policies accepted by their community members.” Having trained staff in CPR and AED is just one more service you can provide to your members and your community.

If you are interested in providing training to your staff, please reach out to your local fire department.


  • Joyce Hammons#1

    August 1, 2022

    Things happen everyday, you have staff, customers and community on the line daily. Every business needs to have personnel certified to preform CPR. The life you save may be your own, staff, friend or family.


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