Barrier Devices and Disease Transmission During CPR

Fact Checked

Participants enrolled in CPR training will learn about disease transmission and safety when providing care for patients that need basic first aid or CPR. Prevention of disease transmission and utilizing barrier devices is a integral part of workplace approved first aid and CPR training. Participants should also be aware of techniques and procedures of prevention of disease transmission. The page will outline some the key components of preventing disease transmission and applying barrier devices during and after CPR. To learn more about CPR HCP take a CPR HCP course in Ottawa. We have training partners located throughout Canada listed in our locations pages.

Hand Washing

Hand washing is a key and essential component to preventing the spread of infection. Participants enrolled in any workplace approved CPR course will be taught the importance of had washing. The use of liquid soap is preferred as bar soap can contribute to transfer of infection. For drying hands, rescuers should use disposable towels. The hand washing should include the fingers, palms, back of hands, wrists and under the nails. The process of washing hands should take no less than 10 seconds. Hands should be rinsed thoroughly after soaping.


Participants are required to wear gloves when performing CPR, if available, to successfully complete any CPR course. Rescuer(s) should wear gloves whenever direct contact with any patient’s bodily materials may be possible. Rescuers must use waterproof gloves. Gloves are a effective component of preventing disease transmission. Rescuer(s) with allergies to latex should not wear latex gloves and inform his or her employer to purchase non-latex gloves. Wearing gloves does not substitute for hand washing. Rescuer(s) must still wash hands as previously discussed. Removal of gloves should be done immediately after the CPR or first aid situation has been completed. Gloves should not be reused or washed. Equipment that can be re-used must undergo a sterilization process.

Pocket Masks

Pocket masks are a effective component of preventing disease transmission. Candidates enrolled in any first aid and or CPR course through St Mark James will learn to use pocket masks. Although the significantly reduce chances of disease transmission, mouth to mouth resuscitation is more effective than pocket mask resuscitation. However, participants must use a pocket mask whenever one is available. A pocket mask is equipped with a one-way valve that prevents fluid transmission when providing resuscitation. It is recommended that pocket masks be disposed after CPR use.

Bag-Valve Masks

Participants in CPR HCP will learn to use advanced resuscitation equipment such as bag-valve masks. Bag-valve masks are effective at ventilating a victim and providing almost no chance of disease transmission.

Candidates enrolled in CPR HCP and other CPR courses provided through St Mark James will learn techniques and skills at using barrier devices and preventing disease transmission when rescuing patients.

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