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The Cost Of Starting A CPR Business

Updated: Feb 25, 2020

I have recently become authorized to be an American Heart Association (AHA) instructor trainer and on more than one occasion I have been asked, by those interested in taking an instructor course, "What equipment will I need to teach classes and how much is it going to cost?". That is a very good question. Especially since you will be forking out a few hundred dollars to take the instructor course and become certified as a CPR instructor. Unfortunately, that information is not easy to come by - at least it wasn't for me when I was starting out. So for those who are interested in becoming instructors, here you go.

Although the information I am sharing is specific to becoming an AHA instructor, the cost will be roughly the same whether you are a Red Cross, American Safety and Health Institute, or an instructor with any another organization. You may also save money by purchasing the equipment and materials on Amazon or Ebay. There are also some great "CPR Instructor" groups on Facebook where you can buy used equipment.


The first expense you will make is taking the AHA Instructor course. There are two basic CPR instructor courses you can take and they will both cost more-or-less the same. They are:

  1. Heartsaver Instructor. This course allows you to teach first aid, CPR, and AED use to laypersons (non-medical professionals).

  2. BLS (Basic Life Support) Instructor. This course allows you to teach CPR, AED use, and other basic life support skills specific to medical professionals. As a BLS instructor, you will also be authorized to teach Heartsaver classes as long as you also purchase the Heartsaver curriculum. I will discuss this in more detail below.

AHA Training Centers offer these courses. Training centers are independent entities authorized by the AHA to teach AHA courses and distribute certification cards. There are a few different types of Training Centers. The most common types are 1)Hospital/EMS services/educational institutions that train their own employees/students and 2) For-profit entrepreneurial training centers that provide training to the general public.

Cost for the course: $200 - $500 (training centers set their own prices)

To find an AHA Training Center in your area click here. By default, this site will show you the CPR classes in your area. Be sure to refine your search by clicking on "Search Training Centers/Sites".

INSTRUCTOR CURRICULUM (for the course you wish to teach)

To issue an AHA cards to your students, you will need to follow the AHA course curriculum for the type of certification you will be issuing to your students (Heartsaver/BLS) . The curriculum includes an instructor manual and video (DVD or streaming). Prices are listed bel


Training Manikins: There are various brands of CPR manikins to choose from out there but I am going to recommend the Prestan manikins for two reasons 1) they are very durable 2) as of January 2019 the AHA requires that all AHA instructors teaching adult CPR use feedback devices that monitor compression rate and depth. The Prestan manikins have internal rate and depth monitors.

How many manikins you buy will depend on your budget. The student-to-manikin ratio set by the AHA states that you can have 3 students to 1 manikin. So 1 adult, 1 child, and 1 infant manikin will allow you to teach a class of three.

Cost of Prestan family pack (one adult, child, infant): $345.33

AED Trainer: The price range for AED trainers are anywhere from $99 to $1,000. If you are just starting out and have a limited budget the Red Cross AED Trainer is your best bet. It's the one I started out with. As with manikins, your student-to-AED ratio is 3:1.

Cost: $99.95

Other Materials

Training pocket mask and valves : Cost for box of 10: $41.95

CPR training face shield (box of 36): Cost for box of 36 $9.95

Adult Bag Mask Device (BLS only): Cost $16.34

Infant Bag Mask Device (BLS only): Cost $16.35


I didn't include tax in the above numbers so the total whether you go the Heartsaver or BLS route will be more-or-less the same - around $1500. This number is based on one class of 3 people. If you shop around and/or buy used, you can save even more. There are also other minor expenditures such copies for student sign-in-sheets, tests. The expenses above are the bare minimum needed to get off the ground.


This article is posted on the following RGV CPR social media pages. Please leave questions or comments there.


Do you live in South Texas and are Interested in becoming an instructor? Click here to register for one of our instructor courses.

Live outside of South Texas? No problem. Our Training Center has nationwide privileges. We can do an instructor course in your city. Contact us for a quote or to arrange a training in your city. email: phone: (956) 533-7975

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