8 Things to Know About Recertifying ACLS Online

Don’t recertify before reading this guide. Here are the 8 things you need to know before getting your ACLS recertification exam online.

Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) is a common certification required for many working medical professionals. Obtaining an ACLS certification requires you to have knowledge of many different subjects, including CPR, the use of an AED, and identifying signs of a cardiac emergency. CPR alone is responsible for saving up to 200,000 lives per year, according to the American Heart Association (AHA), and other procedures included in ACLS training help save even more.


ACLS certification is extremely important and in many cases, particularly in hospital settings, will actually be required to continue working in your profession. When a cardiac arrest occurs, you will not have time to review your notes or find someone else to help—you will need to be ready and able to immediately take action.


Unsurprisingly, more than an estimated one million people will apply for ACLS certification or ACLS recertification every year. These certifications, like other related certifications, need to be renewed every two years.


While the principles behind ACLS training have remained somewhat consistent over the years, the ACLS landscape is rapidly changing. For example, more people are considering obtaining ACLS certification—at least in part—online. Below, we will discuss 8 things you should know about ACLS recertification online.


1. ACLS Recertification May Have Both Online and In-Person Components


Typically, ACLS certification (and recertification) will include both a written and physical examination. The written examination, which consists of a series of multiple-choice questions about various ACLS topics, tests to ensure that critical actors have the knowledge needed to save someone’s life during a cardiac arrest. The physical examination will test to ensure that you have the skills needed to do so, as well. While your employer will likely require the physical portion to be taken in person, the written exam and study materials can be accessed entirely online, using platforms such as eMedCert.


2. Many Hospitals Accept Online ACLS Certification


Some of the most common questions people have about an online ACLS certification program are “are online ACLS certifications valid” and “will my employer accept my certificate obtained online?” In our experience, our online ACLS certification has been accepted over 95% of the time. Additionally, if your employer is one of the few that does not accept an online ACLS certificate, eMedCert offers a guaranteed, full refund.


3. Many Employers Are Willing to Reimburse Employees for ACLS Recertification


Obtaining ACLS certification costs about $169 and recertification costs about $119. Your profession may also require additional certifications, such as BLS and PALS, and these costs can begin to add up. Fortunately, many employers are willing to either partially or fully reimburse their employees for obtaining these important certificates. If you are unsure whether your employer is willing to do so, you should speak to them directly. You may be surprised just how much they are willing to offer.


4. Online ACLS Recertification Isn’t Just for Nurses


It is a common misconception that ACLS certification is something that only applies to nurses. However, this is something that is simply untrue. While it remains the case that all nurses working in urgent and critical care settings will need to have ACLS certifications, there are other professions that may require ACLS training as well. These professions can include but are not limited to, doctors, dentists, police officers, firefighters, teachers, lifeguards, and more. Essentially, anyone who is likely to be near someone experiencing cardiac arrest will probably need some sort of formal training and certification.


Online ACLS Renewal


5. ACLS Training is Designed to Help People Sustain Life During Emergencies


In many cases, the procedures and practices covered in an ACLS course are not necessarily designed to completely save someone’s life, rather, they are designed to help keep a person alive until additional help and resources can arrive. However, without the help of ACLS-certified professionals, the odds of surviving a cardiac arrest will significantly decrease. Knowing that this certification can—and has—make the difference between life and death makes it clear why recertifying ACLS every two years is fundamentally important.


6. To Become ACLS Certified, You Will Need to Memorize Algorithms


One of the trickiest components of recertifying ACLS online is memorizing the corresponding ACLS algorithms. These can include algorithms for cardiac arrest, algorithms for bradycardia, algorithms for tachycardia, algorithms for acute coronary syndrome (ACS), and more. There are many different ways to help memorize these algorithms, including group reviews, writing notes by hand, and making flashcards. Really, whatever study method works best for you can likely be applied here.


7. Each Year, about 475,000 Americans Die from Cardiac Arrest


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and, sadly, about 475,000 Americans die from cardiac arrest each year. However, there are indeed some things that can be done to decrease this figure, such as making the knowledge and skills of ACLS more accessible. More than half of these cardiac arrests take place in a non-hospital setting, meaning that it is crucial for people “on the street” to be able to jump into action, as needed. For this very reason, some people consider obtaining ACLS and other certifications, even if their job does not require them to do so.


8. There Are Other Ways to Save on ACLS Recertification


As suggested, many employers that require their employees to obtain ACLS certification will be willing to offer full reimbursement. But this is not always the case, and when they don’t, you’ll probably find yourself looking for different ways to save. Fortunately, there are quite a few ways you can reduce the cost of obtaining ACLS certification online. Certifying in groups and bundling multiple certifications (ACLS, PALS, BLS, etc.), will help reduce your overall costs. For more information on our online ACLS certification group rates, please visit our Group Options page.




Recertifying ACLS online has become increasingly popular over the past few years. Through the practices taught in ACLS training, thousands of lives are saved every year. If you are considering obtaining your ACLS certificate, be sure to consider these important facts.

To learn more about our ACLS recertification course, visit eMedCert.com today, or reach out directly by contacting [email protected]