PILS - Paediatric Immediate Life Support

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The Resuscitation Council (UK) Paediatric Immediate Life Support (PILS) course was launched in 2007. It was developed in response to a demand from healthcare professionals who may have to act as first responders and treat seriously ill children or children in cardiac arrest until the arrival of a cardiac arrest team.  

Each year, on average, 2,200 courses are held and 17,000 healthcare professionals are trained.

Who is this course suitable for?
The PILS Course is appropriate for the following candidates: doctors, medical students (final year), nurses, health visitors, school nurses,  nursing students (final year), midwives, ODPs , cardiac technicians, resuscitation officers, physiotherapists, dentists, dental nurses, ambulance technicians/paramedics.

The PILS course addresses the needs of staff who need more advanced skills than those taught during basic life support (BLS), but who do not require the more comprehensive two-day European Paediatric Advanced Life Support (EPALS) course.

Learning outcomes

  • The PILS course teaches the knowledge and skills to:
  • understand the structured ABCDE approach that facilitates rapid recognition of seriously ill children;
  • provide appropriate initial treatment interventions to prevent cardiorespiratory arrest;
  • treat children in respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest until the arrival of a resuscitation team or more experienced assistance;
  • promote active  membership of a paediatric resuscitation team.

Course structure
PILS courses are held at centres throughout the UK and are approved and certified by the Resuscitation Council (UK). This ensures uniformity of content and standard regardless of the centre.

The PILS course is run over one day and the course programme consists of one lecture, skill stations and simulation practice. 

The half-day recertification PILS course (see separate page) is only available to those within one year of the expiry of their Resuscitation Council (UK) PILS provider certificate.  If more than a year has elapsed since the expiry of the PILS certificate the full PILS course must be attended.

Assessment and Certification
Assessment is continuous and is guided by the assessment forms provided for each core skill.  Copies of the assessment forms should be forwarded to the candidate with their manual.

Successful candidates receive a Resuscitation Council (UK) PILS provider certificate, which is valid for one year. The PILS course is recognised for up to 5 continuing professional development (CPD) points.

Pre-course preparation
The manual is sent to candidates two weeks before the start of the course. Candidates are expected to have prepared for the course by reading the manual.


Course regulations

PILS courses are held throughout the year at centres across the UK. To apply, candidates should search for a course centre below and them directly for application details.

Course fees are decided locally by the course centre. For further information on any aspect of the course, please contact the ILS Co-ordinator using our Ticketing System.


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