Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support can be described as “prehospital life support” as well as transportation to the hospital. As the terms suggest, one is a general standard, whereas the other is more intensive. Life support units are usually called to action based on the severity of the situation and what will be needed to keep the patient safe.


When planning your event safety and crowd control, it is critical to consider all of the aspects that govern the ceremony and what could possibly happen based on the activities. Choosing the life support option that is best for your event is highly dependant on the type of event (or movie set production) what you may encounter.

The Differences

The big difference between Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support is what is inside the standby ambulance. In a basic life support ambulance, there normally will be two emergency medical technicians (or EMTs), while an advanced support unit will have a paramedic added to the roster. Though there is just one difference in the people, the function changes a whole lot.

Basic Life Support units are completely non-intrusive. ALS (Advanced Life Support) units, on the other hand, are authorized to use needles and instruments to cut the skin if need be. Advanced units can also provide medicines, something that Basic Life Support cannot administer. ALS doesn’t have to be this specific though. They can also do everything a BLS unit does, but if it is necessary, they can do much more. ALS can give some treatment in case of injuries before getting to the hospital that BLS just doesn’t have the right to do.

Advanced & Basic Standby Life Support

Advanced Life Support units tend to be equipped with airway support, cardiac life support, cardiac monitors, and glucose testers. With this equipment comes a higher level of expertise.

Training for basic units can take little time, lasting just a few months. ALS units, on the other hand, require much more training and take a significant amount longer to complete training. Those in an advanced unit will be more professionally adept and ready for more severe situations.

Choosing the Right Service

When planning an event, there are tons of aspects to look at that will affect the level of risk to the safety of your guests. So these need to be taken into consideration individually to come up with a customized medical event staffing plan.  So the exact size and type of staff you need is dependent on the size of your event and the types of activities and accommodations your site has.  Safety is always a big player in planning any event. For most types of events and movie set productions, emergency services may need to be on standby in case something happens. Injuries and unfortunate natural causes, like allergies, call for life support. The question you need to ask yourself is; what will the attendees need?

Keep in mind the size of your crowd, their interests, and their typical behaviors. If the event is something like a game show, chances are advanced units are not as necessary. Many types of sporting events, on the other hand, might need more advanced care units. These are not the only two kinds of events, of course, There is an array of different occasions. You should consult an experienced event medical staffing professional to help you determine the best safety plan for your situation.

Accounting for everything in your event management plan is crucial to figuring out what kind of emergency medical assistance you should get. It is ultimately up to your judgment on keeping the safety of your guests secure, but getting a consultation from a specialist is your best bet to making the right decisions and reducing your liability. First Aid Services of San Diego Inc. specializes in medical event planning for any type of event – no matter the size. Feel free to contact us now to get your free quote. All our quotes are customized to your exact type of event and situation.

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