Frequently Asked Questions

Where are courses located?

Courses are held in the iCELS, the interprofessional Center for Experiential Learning and Simulation at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, MA. iCELS is located on the third floor of the Albert Sherman Center (368 Plantation Street, Worcester). For directions, please visit http://umassmed.edu/icels/about/getting-here/

Do I need to bring anything?

For BLS, ACLS, and PALS Online/Skills Session courses, you must print out your certificate showing you have completed the online portion, and bring it to the skills session with you.

For traditional classes, please bring your textbook.

Where can I park?

If you do not have reserved parking at U Mass Memorial Medical Center or U Mass Medical School, please park in the visitor garage adjacent to the main Hospital entrance. The visitor garage is shown on the campus map here, labeled as “South Road Parking Garage”: http://www.umassmed.edu/about/directions/campusmap/

Is there a charge for parking?

Current rates for parking in the visitor garage can be found at http://umassmed.edu/parking/

We do not reimburse BLS, ACLS, PALS, or FCCS learners for parking. ATLS learners may request a parking voucher at the reception desk.

What courses do you offer, and how often?

We offer ATLS 4 to 5 times a year.

FCCS is currently only offered once a year, typically in late fall.

We offer ACLS, BLS (CPR), and PALS throughout the year.

We are currently unable to offer ACLS + Moderate Sedation, but we hope to in the near future. If you have an interest in ACLS + Moderate Sedation, please send an email to icels@umassmed.edu with your name and home institution. We will contact you when the course is available again.

You can find a catalog of our current course offerings here.

How can I register?

What dates are available?

Our registration system automatically lists courses as full when the enrollment limit has been reached.  You can register for courses by visiting http://umassmed.edu/icels/services/certification-courses/

To see the available dates for a course, simply click on the registration option you are interested in.

Do I need to register in advance? Can you hold my spot?

Most of our courses close to general registration one week before the course begins. We want to ensure that learners have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the material, and complete any testing that is required. This also helps us have certificates or cards ready on the day of the course.

Some courses may fill before this time. We cannot hold spots open—you must register if you want to ensure your place in a course.

For initial ATLS certification, we offer an “early bird” discount for learners who register more than a month prior to the course.

I missed the registration deadline! Can I still register?

If you have missed the general registration cutoff date for a course, but wish to find out if you can still register, please contact us at icels@umassmed.edu. If we are able to enroll you in the course as a late registrant, a fee may apply.

Can I register over the phone?

Unfortunately, we can only accept online registration. You can register for courses by visiting http://umassmed.edu/icels/services/certification-courses/

My department or residency program will cover my fees. How should I pay?

If you are a resident or fellow at U Mass Memorial Health Care, your fees may be covered. Please confer with your residency coordinator or the head of your department about their policies. Some departments will pay for your registration, but cannot reimburse you. Your program or department can provide you with a cost account number or Speed Type number to enter in the payment field when you register. If they do not wish to provide the number, they can fill out your registration for you, instead.

Which course should I register for?

Can anyone take BLS for the healthcare provider?

Healthcare provider BLS is recommended for healthcare providers at any level. The course is not recommended for the lay public.

What is the difference between the Initial (provider) course and the Retrain course?

The provider or initial course provides the foundations and basic knowledge needed to be successful in the course. The retrain course provides a refresher for practicing healthcare professionals, as well as the opportunity to keep their knowledge up to date with current medical evidence. You must have a current certification, or be within your 6 month grace period, to enroll a retraining course for that certificate.

What certifications are required for my position?

Please consult your home institution to confirm what certifications they require you to keep up-to-date.

Is there an online option?

For BLS (CPR), ACLS, and PALS, we offer a mixed-format course which includes both an online class and a hands-on skills session held at our center. For these courses, you will be emailed an online key 1-2 weeks before the skills session you have registered for.

This online material must be completed prior to the skills session. The online material is intensive, and includes a test. Please start work on the material as soon as possible after receiving the key. If you begin the night before your skills session, you will not have time to complete it.

When you have completed the online course, please print out the resulting certificate, and bring it with you to the skills session. If you do not come to class prepared, there is a chance that you will fail the skills session, and have to schedule remedial coursework and testing.

All of our courses require some in-person instruction or testing. None of them can be completed entirely online.

 

Will I receive a textbook or other materials?

Will I receive a book?

If you registered for ATLS or FCCS you will receive a textbook. If you registered for the in-person BLS Class (as opposed to the Online/Skills Session option), you will also receive a textbook.

For BLS (CPR), ACLS, and PALS, we offer a mixed-format course which includes both an online class and a hands-on skills session held at our center. For these courses, you will be emailed an online key 1-2 weeks before the skills session you have registered for. This key provides access to all the learning material you need. You will not receive a textbook.

When will I receive a textbook or online key?

If you have registered for an online and skills session mixed-format course, you will be emailed an online key 1-2 weeks prior to the course. The email will include instructions for logging in to the website, viewing the course videos, and completing the online test. Please note, the online course is intensive, so please allow yourself ample time to complete it. You must present the certificate of completion at the time you attend your skills session.

If you have registered for a BLS in-person class (rather than a skills session), you will receive a textbook. Those who work on the U Mass campus may pick up their books at iCELS reception before the course. All others who register for the BLS class will have their books mailed to them.

If you have registered for ATLS, your textbook will be sent out approximately 30 days before the course.

I was sent an online key. What do I have to do?

This online material must be completed prior to the skills session. The online material is intensive, and includes a test. Please start work on the material as soon as possible after receiving the key. We recommend planning to complete the online material at least 48 hours before the skills session.

When you have completed the online course, please print out the resulting certificate, and bring it with you to the skills session. This will serve as proof that you have successfully completed the online course. If you do not come to class prepared, there is a chance that you will fail the skills session, and have to schedule remedial coursework and testing.

What if I have technical difficulties with the online material?

For questions about online materials for BLS, ACLS, and PALS, please contact the American Heart Association. Their website is http://www.onlineaha.org/. You can reach AHA customer service at 1-888-242-8883, or email them at help@onlineaha.org

How long will my course take?

BLS Initial Skills Session: 1-2 hours of online material and 2.5 hours of skills testing.

BLS Retrain Skills Session: 1-2 hours of online material and 1 hour of skills testing.

BLS Retrain Class: 2 hours of classroom instruction and skills testing.

ACLS Initial Skills Session: 3-5 hours of online material and 6 hours of skills testing. Lunch is provided.

ACLS Retrain Skills Session: 3-5 hours of online material and 3 hours of skills testing.

PALS Initial Skills Session: 3-5 hours of online material and 8 hours of skills testing. Lunch is provided.

PALS Retrain Skills Session: 3-5 hours of online material and 4 hours of skills testing

ATLS Provider/Auditor: 2 days, usually from 7:30am-5:00pm. Breakfast and lunch are provided.

ATLS Retrain: 1 Day, usually from 7:30am-5:00pm. Breakfast and lunch are provided.

FCCS: 2 days, usually from 7:45am-5:00pm. Lunch is provided.

What about certification cards?

When will I receive my card or certificate?

Classes must be paid in full in order to receive a certification card and continuing education credit(s). A certification card is generally awarded on the day of the course to those who successfully complete the course and have paid for the course in full.

If for some reason your card is not available on the day of the course, your card will be mailed to you at the address you gave when you registered. If you wish your card sent elsewhere, please contact us at icels@umassmed.edu

How can I receive Continuing Education Credits?

Continuing Education Credits for our online courses with skills sessions are provided directly by the AHA. Once you have successfully completed all of the material, you may request a certificate through their website.

Continuing Education Credits for ATLS are managed by the verifying institution, the American College of Surgeons.

We provide Continuing Education Credits for FCCS learners. To request verification of those credits, please contact us at icels@umassmed.edu.

We also provide Continuing Education Credits for BLS Learners who attend an in-person class (rather than a skills session). To request verification of those credits, please contact us at icels@umassmed.edu.

How long is my card valid for?

BLS, ACLS, and PALS certifications are valid for 2 years.

FCCS certifications are valid for 3 years

ATLS certifications are valid for 4 years 

My card has expired. Can I still take the retrain class?

For ATLS, BLS, ACLS, and PALS: If your card has expired within the past 6 months, you are still eligible to take a retrain course. Otherwise, you must take the initial course to recertify.

Please note that this 6 month grace period only applies to your eligibility to take a retraining course rather than an initial course. Your certification will still have lapsed as of the expiration date on your card or certificate. If your home institution requires the certification, please consult their policies to determine whether a lapsed certification will affect your privileges.

For FCCS, there is no difference between the initial and recertification material.

What if I lost my card, how do I replace it?

You may order a replacement card at the following link: https://umassmed-web.ungerboeck.com/reg/reg_p1_form.aspx?oc=10&ct=REGISTRATION&eventid=5346

Please note that we cannot replace expired cards.

I took an online course that does not require an in-person skills test. Can I get a certificate card from UMass?

No, AHA online courses require an in person skills test, these courses are not transferable.

What if I cannot make the class and have to cancel?

What if I cannot make the class and have to cancel?

BLS Courses are non-refundable. Transfers are permitted up to 10 business days before the original program date without penalty. After that point, no transfers will be granted. If you wish to transfer to another BLS course date with sufficient advance notice, please submit a request to iCELS@umassmed.edu. Your request must include the name of the registrant, the course the registrant is currently enrolled in, and the course they wish to be transferred to.

ACLS Online and Skills Session Courses are refundable up until 1 week before the original date, less $150 if an online key has been assigned. Transfers are permitted up to 10 business days before the original program date without penalty. After that point, all transfer requests, if granted, will incur a fee ($135 for Retrain, $200 for initial). If you wish to transfer to another ACLS Skills Session date, please submit a transfer request to iCELS@umassmed.edu. Your request must include the name of the registrant, the course the registrant is currently enrolled in, and the course they wish to be transferred to.

PALS Online and Skills Session Courses are refundable up until 1 week before the original date, less $150 if an online key has been assigned. Transfers are permitted up to 10 business days before the original program date without penalty. After that point, all transfer requests, if granted, will incur a fee ($135 for Retrain, $200 for initial). If you wish to transfer to another PALS Skills Session date, please submit a transfer request to iCELS@umassmed.edu. Your request must include the name of the registrant, the course the registrant is currently enrolled in, and the course they wish to be transferred to.

Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) classes are non-refundable when canceled less than 2 weeks prior to the course date, or after course materials have been mailed (approximately 30 days prior to the course). However, a registrant may transfer to another class, if arrangements are made 10 business days prior to the original class date. If you wish to transfer to another ATLS course date, please submit a transfer request to iCELS@umassmed.edu. Your request must include the name of the registrant, the course the registrant is currently enrolled in, and the course they wish to be transferred to.

Do you offer one-on-one skills sessions?

No, in order to provide a higher-quality simulation experience, we now only conduct skills sessions in groups. Please consult the registration page of the course you are interested in to see what skills sessions are open.

 If you completed an online course under our old system, and still need to register for a skills session, please contact us at icels@umassmed.edu. We would be happy to transfer you into any scheduled skills session that has openings.

 

My question isn't answered here. Who can I contact?

If you have a question or concern about certification courses, please feel free to contact us at icels@umassmed.edu. A member of the certification courses team will respond as soon as is possible. We appreciate your patience, as we receive a high volume of inquiries. 

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