No, this is a recommendation only. Program Sponsoring Organizations are responsible for ensuring that all instructors are adequately trained and have appropriate experience to deliver CERT training. Qualified trainers may come from many possible backgrounds and have different relevant skillsets. This recommendation is not intended to create an obstacle for programs in delivering training to their communities if such personnel are unavailable. Page 8 of the CERT Basic Training Instructor Guide (in the Introduction and Overview, Instructor Responsibilities, Instructor Qualifications section) includes recommendations for instruction of Sections 3 and 4, Disaster Medical Operations. Specifically, the Instructor Guide recommends that these sections be taught by licensed paramedics, EMTs, or nurses, and that all other sections be taught by skilled fire and rescue instructors (see below).
Additionally, while CERT Instructors must have graduated from CERT Train-the-Trainer, it is acceptable and encouraged for relevant subject matter experts (SMEs) to deliver portions of CERT Basic Training. Even if the SMEs have not graduated from CERT Train-the-Trainer, they may deliver parts of the training if they are approved by Sponsoring Organizations and paired with a Train-the-Trainer qualified instructor.
This article first appeared in the monthly Individual and Community Preparedness Newsletter. Subscribe here.