Standard First Aid Training, Courses and Re-Certifications.

Standard First Aid VS Emergency First Aid

All of the major Canadian first aid and CPR providers offer several of the same first aid and CPR courses. The most popular first aid classes are standard first aid and emergency first aid. One of the most frequently asked questions is what is the difference between standard first aid and emergency first aid (register for either course here). This page will hopefully answer that question.

Difference in Course Content:

Emergency First Aid Courses include the following first aid topics into the course outline:

  • CPR level “A”, “C” or “HCP”.
  • Training in the use and application of a automated external defibrillator.
  • Respiratory Emergencies such as anaphylaxis, aspiration, hyperventilation, shock and asthma.
  • Circulatory Emergencies such as bleeding, heart attacks, angina, transient ischemic attacks and strokes.
    Folded Splint

    Learning to use a hard splint is a component of both emergency and standard first aid.

  • Broken bones and fractures.

Standard first aid courses include all of the content mentioned above, however, they include additional training in all of the topics mentioned in the standard first aid course home page.

Difference in Course Length:

The course length of a emergency first aid course is approximately 8 hours in length. The course length of a standard first aid course is approximately 16 hours.

Difference in Certification:

Candidates that successfully complete a emergency first aid, CPR and AED course will receive certification in that award. Candidates that complete standard first aid, CPR and AED will receive certification in standard first aid. Both certificates are nationally accredited and valid throughout Canada. Both certificates are also valid for 3 years.


Both courses have available re-certification courses. Candidates registered in standard first aid can re-certify in emergency first aid in which they will receive a emergency first aid renewal award. Candidates registered in emergency first aid can not renew certification for standard first aid.

Difference in Cost of the Courses:

A emergency first aid course costs approximately 75 to 100 dollars. A standard first aid course costs anywhere from 130 to 180 dollars. Re-certification courses cost anywhere from 50 to 110 dollars.

Difference in Registration:

All of the major providers including St. Johns Ambulance, St Mark James, Heart and Stroke Foundation and the Lifesaving Society offer both standard first aid and emergency first aid courses.



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