Free Online Certifications: A Resume Booster for Healthcare Professionals

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In the rapidly evolving healthcare industry, continuing education and training is critical for professionals to stay up-to-date and advance their careers. Obtaining certifications in relevant specialty areas or skills can provide healthcare workers with professional credentials to stand out and open up new job opportunities. 

Fortunately, there are now many free online certification programs offered by reputable healthcare organizations that professionals can utilize to boost their resumes.

This article will examine the growing importance of certifications in the healthcare field, explain how to effectively list certifications on resumes, and provide an overview of some popular free online certification programs available to healthcare professionals looking to expand their skill sets. 

Whether seeking to advance to a higher position or transition into a new medical role, free certifications can serve as invaluable resume boosters for ambitious healthcare workers.

The Importance of Certifications

Obtaining certifications demonstrates mastery of up-to-date standards, technologies, and best practices in a healthcare specialty. They show that professionals have acquired the necessary knowledge and skills to excel in a particular medical role or environment. For example, Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certification indicates expertise in providing care for pediatric emergencies. 

Listing relevant certifications on resumes displays a commitment to continuing education and an ability to keep up with innovations in the healthcare field. This is becoming increasingly crucial as the industry rapidly evolves, especially due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Certifications can provide professionals with a competitive edge when applying to jobs or angling for a promotion. They are concrete evidence of expanded capabilities, making candidates more appealing to employers.

Where to List Certifications on Resumes

Certifications should be included in a dedicated “Certifications” section on a resume. They can also be added under the “Education” or “Licensure and Certifications” sections. When listing a certification, always include the full official name of the certificate, followed by the organization that awarded it. 

The year the certification was obtained can also be listed. If the certification is in progress, include the expected completion date. For example:


  • Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), American Heart Association, 2022


  • Basic Life Support (BLS) for Healthcare Providers, American Red Cross, 2021

Licensure and Certifications

  • Certified Medical Assistant (CMA), American Association of Medical Assistants, 2020

Proper formatting is important when listing certifications on resumes, as it allows employers to quickly identify credentials.

Popular Free Online Certifications

Many respected healthcare organizations and institutions offer free online certifications that professionals can add to their resumes. These provide the opportunity to build skills affordably on flexible schedules. Some top free certifications include:

  • The National Healthcareer Association provides self-paced online certifications in areas like medical billing and coding, electronic health records, and pharmacy technology. These demonstrate specialized abilities to employers.
  • The American Heart Association offers certifications such as Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS). These certifications exhibit critical lifesaving skills.
  • The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society offers certifications in health information technology topics including cybersecurity, data analysis, and health IT leadership. These skills are increasingly sought after.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides free online certifications relevant to public health, epidemiology, and emergency preparedness. These showcase expertise in preventative care and population health.

Numerous universities also offer free online courses culminating in certifications related to healthcare administration, global health, and public health. There are many options to choose from to strengthen a resume.

Choosing the Right Certifications

When selecting which certifications to pursue, healthcare professionals should tailor their choices to their current role and future career aspirations. Obtaining a certification directly relevant to their desired career path or specialty will maximize employability. 

For example, a nurse looking to transition into an informatics role may want to earn a certification in health information management.

Professionals should research which specific certifications or continuing education credentials are preferred or required by employers in their target field. Many healthcare job postings will list desired certifications. Earning these niche credentials can give job seekers a competitive advantage.

Additionally, some employers may offer reimbursement or support to earn certifications in high-demand skills like medical coding. Workers should inquire about these potential professional development benefits from their workplace. By strategically choosing certifications aligned with career goals and employer needs, healthcare professionals can efficiently boost their resumes.

Also Read : Tips and Requirements For Travel Nursing


Free online certifications offer healthcare professionals accessible opportunities to continue building expertise without extensive time or financial commitments. They allow busy medical workers to pursue career development on flexible schedules. 

By selecting certifications strategically relevant to their professional goals and field, healthcare workers can earn credentials to help them progress. Listing newly obtained certifications properly on resumes displays an up-to-date skillset and shows initiative to employers. 

From medical assistants to nurses, certification programs enable healthcare professionals at various stages of their careers to expand their capabilities. Obtaining targeted free certifications can provide the resume boost many medical workers need to unlock new job possibilities and reach their full potential.

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