If I Perform CPR, Will I Catch A Disease? (Part 2)

In part one of, “If I perform CPR, will I catch a disease?” we talked about the chances of catching a disease from CPR. Now, we will focus on how to decrease your chances even further!


Previously we talked about gloves and safety glasses. Now we focus on:

CPR Barrier Devices

We are going to focus on CPR barrier devices. These devices will protect you from “the goo.” If you read the article “Real Life CPR,” you already know that real CPR is different than you will learn about in many classes. It is not neat and clean like the classroom setting. Many times a person will have blood or vomit in their mouth and you will be happy that you have a barrier device. There are 3 types of CPR barrier devices that you should know about:

Bag Valve Masks

Bag Valve MaskBag valve masks are what you see on TV shows like ER. It is a mask that is placed over an unconscious person’s face that is attached to a bag. The bag is squeezed and the air in the bag is pushed into the patient’s lungs. The bag is also hooked up to oxygen, making it the safest and most effective way to deliver breaths during CPR. You keep an arm’s length from “the goo,” and will not place your mouth over the patient’s mouth.

Pocket Masks

CPR Pocket MaskPocket masks are not as effective as the BVM, but they are portable. The masks are placed over the patient’s face and they have a one way valve so that air can pass through to the patient’s lungs, but “goo” cannot come back through the mask to your mouth. Pocket masks are popular in office first aid kits. I have one in my truck, but they are still too bulky for carrying around on a daily basis.

Keychain Masks

SureFire CPR Keychain MaskKeychain masks are the most portable CPR barrier devices available. They consist of a one way valve fixed into the center of a piece of plastic. The plastic will fit over the patient’s face, some masks will fit around the ears as well. You keep your keys with you at all times, right? If that’s the case, you will never be unprotected in the case that you need to perform CPR.


Barrier devices are the best way to protect yourself from disease. Make sure you choose the best one for your situation! Need a barrier device? Get one when you take a CPR class with SureFire CPR!

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About the author

I spent 15 years as a firefighter and paramedic...

And too often I would arrive on the scene of someone unconscious, surrounded by a circle of people feeling helpless. Sometimes those people would even have CPR training but lacked the confidence and experience to act.

That’s why I started SureFire CPR. Our classes are practical and engaging – teaching you the crucial skills you need to know what to do and feel empowered to take action.

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Zack Zarrilli, Founder

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