First aid training encompasses basic life-support techniques such as how to stop bleeding, take vitals and give cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Only properly trained and certified first aid instructors should teach these techniques, as performing them correctly can make the difference between life and death. Being a first aid instructor paid about $33,000 in 2011, according to the Simply Hired website, but pay varies depending on whether the instructor is self-employed, how many classes he teaches and how many students he takes per class.
The Simply Hired website reports that a first aid instructor made an average salary of $33,000 per year in June 2010; this converts to $15.87 per hour. This is comparable to the rates of medical assistants, who earned $29,760 per year in May 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The bureau also shows first aid instructor salaries are similar to the rate in the 25th percentile for licensed practical or vocational nurses, which was $34,260 in May 2010.
First aid instructors can come from a variety of sectors. For instance, emergency medical technicians or paramedics may become certified to teach first aid, as can nurses, doctors, teachers, day care providers and police officers. In certain instances, first aid instructors receive compensation for teaching first aid as part of their regular salary. For instance, a police department may offer free first aid training to the public but treat hours spent teaching the class as part of the instructing police officer's general hours on duty. Other instructors make teaching first aid their primary career, running their own classes. Still other first aid instructors aren't paid at all, volunteering their time through organizations such as the American Red Cross.
The Number of Students and Classes
As asserted by the EMS Safety Services website, a typical CPR or first aid training course cost somewhere between $35 and $75 per person in 2011. However, independent instructors get to decide how many classes they teach and how many people they allow to register for a class. If an instructor teaches just one class per month with 10 students at the $35 to $75 rate, they make $4,200 to $9,000 a year from their teaching. If they taught one 10-student class per week, however, yearly earnings are between $18,200 and $39,000. This still isn't a particularly high salary, but it's fairly substantial additional income if the instructor has a regular full-time job outside of training.
Pay for a first aid instructor depends directly on how many classes he's able to teach. For this reason, first aid instructors have a better chance of getting a higher yearly salary in urban regions, where larger populations demand more first aid services. However, rural regions may offer instructors excellent compensation for teaching to attract instructors to the region.
Another factor to consider with first aid instructors' salaries is that, regardless of whether an instructor works in rural or urban regions, the instructor has no job at all if he can't drum up interest in the training. Thus, first aid instructors must direct some attention toward their marketing efforts. An instructor who knows how to connect first aid to a large number of sectors and situations likely will be able to fill more classes, pitching training to different groups under individualized marketing schemes.