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A Self-Directed, Web-Based Learning Program produced by the American Burn Association

Each year more than 700,000 people in the United States are treated for a burn injury. The quality of care during the first hours after a burn injury has a major impact on the long-term outcome. Yet most initial burn care is provided outside of the burn center environment. The Advanced Burn Life Support ABLS Now© is designed to provide fire fighters, EMTs, paramedics, licensed practical nurses, nurses, nurse practitioners, therapists, physicians assistants, and physicians with the ability to assess and stabilize patients with serious burns during the first critical hours following injury and to identify those patients requiring transfer to a burn center. The course is not designed to teach comprehensive burn care, but rather to provide information that will enable those who only rarely treat burn patients to provide the care needed by a burn patient in the first 24 hours after injury.

Learning/Credits and Contact Hours

The ABLS Now© online learning program provides lecture presentations, as well as case studies.Self-study questions with links to the supporting material in the Provider Manual support the learning process. The learner will complete and submit a course examination at the conclusion of the course. Contact hours and CME credits are available for the course. ABLS Now© certification is achieved by passing the online final exam with a grade of 80% or better. For those who desire full ABLS certification, the hands-on part of the course may be taken at a Burn Center or at an ABA regional or annual meeting.

This continuing education activity was approved by the Emergency Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

The American Burn Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The ABA designates this continuing medical education activity for up to six (6) credits in Category 1 of the Physician's Recognition Award of the American Medical Association. Each physician should claim only those hours of credit he/she actually spent in the educational activity.


Individuals interested in ABLS Now© may find registration information here.

Please print and fax the completed form to (312) 642-9130, or scan and email to kaczmarek@ameriburn.org.

For group rate information, please contact the ABA Central Office at (312) 642-9260.

Course Objectives

  • Define the magnitude and severity of an injury.
  • Identify and establish priorities of treatment.
  • Apply correct methods of physiological monitoring.
  • Determine the appropriate guidelines for transfer of a patient, including factors of time, facility and method of transport.
  • Provide primary treatment of the burn area, associated injuries and common complications within the first 24 hours post-burn.


Burn care is multidisciplinary. ABLS Now© is designed in a multidisciplinary format and is based on the guidelines for initial burn care developed by the American Burn Association. The ABLS Provider Course presents a series of didactic presentations on:

  • Initial Assessment and Management
  • Airway Management
  • Smoke Inhalation Injury
  • Shock and Fluid Resuscitation
  • Burn Wound Management
  • Electrical Injury
  • Chemical Burns
  • Pediatric Burn Injuries
  • Stabilization, Transfer and Transport
  • Disaster Management and the ABA Plan
  • Case Studies

Lectures and case study modules emphasize the American Burn Association criteria for transfer of patients to burn centers.


Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to demonstrate an ability to do the following:

  • Evaluate a patient with a serious burn
  • Define the magnitude and severity of the injury
  • Identify and establish priorities of treatment
  • Manage the airway and support ventilation
  • Initiate and monitor fluid resuscitation
  • Apply correct methods of physiological monitoring
  • Determine which patients should be transferred to a burn center
  • Organize and conduct the inter-hospital transfer of a seriously injured burn patient

Final testing consists of an online exam.

Supporting Operating System & Software Needed

Windows (98se, ME, XP, NT 4.0, 2000) using one of the following programs: Macintosh (9.2, OS X 10.1 or later) using one of the following programs:

  • Internet Explorer 4.0, 5.0, 5.5, 6.0
  • Netscape Navigator 4, 6.2, 7.1
  • AOL 8
  • Compuserve 7 (2000 & XP only)
  • Mozilla 1.2
  • Opera 7
  • Safari 1.1, 1.2
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.2
  • CompuServe 7 (OS 10.1 or later)

Additional Requirements

  • Macromedia Flash Player 5 or higher for presentations and courses
  • Soundcard and speakers/headsets

Contact Information

American Burn Association
Advanced Burn Life Support
311 S. Wacker Drive, Suite 4150
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone: 312-642-9260 Fax: 312-642-9130