A cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR test is a test in which one demonstrates that he/she has the adequate skill to perform CPR when the need arises. The test needs to be cleared in order to obtain a CPR certificate in the same. Often the CPR test is clubbed with a CPR class so that the training and testing can be done in one place. It is also possible for one to take only the test for certification or renewal of an existing certificate.
The standard CPR testing follows two parts:
- Written test: In this test, one is asked a series of questions on the basics of CPR. This part of CPR testing is done to certify that one knows the CPR protocols like when to perform, how to perform, and how to deal with various situations. The written tests are multiple choice questions wherein one has to choose from the given options for the answer of each question.
- Skill test: The second part of the CPR test is the skills test. In this test, one demonstrates CPR skills on a dummy or a manikin. This shows that one knows the proper technique of CPR, can follow the protocol, and knows how to administer breaths and compression. The person taking the CPR test is evaluated by an instructor or a test administrator, who then confirms that one knows how to perform CPR properly.
The CPR certification is generally valid for a year, after which recertification is required to be done. In case of recertification, both the written test and the skill test need to be taken. This is done to ensure that the people already holding the certificate still have the skill they need for performing CPR, since some people who did not have a chance to perform CPR on someone, can forget the protocol or get careless in their skills. The protocols are changed often to new procedures. Hence, it makes it necessary for a person to recertify and take the tests again; to be sure, one knows the new procedures.
Though it is necessary for one to know the right procedure, the CPR tests are usually not much of a stress. Since CPR testing is a part of the CPR class, students get sufficient time to practice the procedures before they go for the final tests, making them more familiar with the CPR procedures and protocols.
The American Red Cross or the American Heart Association are the major organizations that take these CPR tests. They have various courses available like infant/child CPR, adult CPR, first aid, etc. These organizations also allow one to sign up for the classes online, and they provide you with the dates, time, and also the number of people enrolled. All classes provide the equipment needed to learn the procedures.