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Extracorporeal Life Support | ECMO

ELSO Endorsed Course Process



Please read carefully BEFORE YOU APPLY to ensure your center meets all initial criteria for ELSO Endorsement. A non-refundable application fee will be required at the time of application submission; therefore, it is highly recommended that you understand the steps required for your center’s educational activity to be reviewed for ELSO Endorsement. Submission of an application does not guarantee your center’s activity will be endorsed.


An endorsement process ensures that a given course achieves an educational quality as defined by ELSO while ensuring that standardization and consistency are maintained throughout the educational activity.



• A Comprehensive Simulation-Based ECMO course meets all ELSO ECMO curricular requirements (Appendix I) and maintains an immersive simulation experience with a structured debriefing.

• Debriefing is a key feature of this high-level course. Through debriefing, students have the opportunity to improve performance with self-review, but also apply existing knowledge and acquire new knowledge. Debriefing also creates the best learning environment to put theory into practice and promotes self-confidence in clinical decision making

• The course typically runs over 3-5 days. The simulation lab must include the five essential simulation scenarios included (Appendix II).


• An ECMO Course meets all ELSO ECMO curricular requirements for a portion of the curriculum, focusing on VV or VA content. Additionally, the simulation experience may not be immersive or debriefing standards may not be met, with a variable proportion of the course dedicated to simulation training.

• An ECMO Simulation Course that meets all standards of the immersive simulation experience with a structured debriefing. Debriefing is a key feature of this course. All five essential simulation scenarios must be included: drainage insufficiency, air embolism, pump failure, membrane lung failure and gas failure. Student would be expected to complete a didactic ECMO Training experience prior to attending.

• ECMO Simulation Course typically runs over 1.5-2 days.


Any active ELSO member-center may apply for endorsement consideration.

Priority will be given to course that are open to external participants, as well to courses who have multiple course offerings throughout the year.


An endorsement process can also ensure pre-specified minimal educational standards are met and that quality is maintained over time. This is an important measure for participants and allows for broader choice of ECMO courses in terms of location and timing.

The endorsement process offers additional benefit to course providers. ELSO endorsement ensures that the course curriculum is complete and up to date. Gaps in educational quality can be identified and addressed. Course feedback obtained via a standard evaluation form can be compared to other courses and feed back to course directors. Moreover, ELSO branding will provide participants with an assurance regarding content and quality and likely improve course visibility and registration.

Additionally, there are numerous benefits to the learner who would take an ELSO endorsed course. By leveraging the ELSO learning management system, ELSO Academy, learners who complete an ELSO endorsed course will have the activity logged in their ELSO Academy account. This will help keep all their ECMO educational documents safely in one location for future reference. Their certificates and course completion information could be accessed at any time for use with center credentialing/privileging, as well as for ELSO Adult ECMO Certification (E-AEC).


• A Comprehensive Simulation-Based ECMO Course must meet all ELSO ECMO curricular requirements and thus will be a combined VV and VA course and include the five essential simulation scenarios. (Appendix I & Appendix II)

• An ECMO course must meet all ELSO ECMO Curricular requirements for either VV or VA ECMO and thus can be a VV or VA focused courses.

• An ECMO Simulation Course must include the five essential simulation scenarios (Appendix II) and include an immersive simulation experience with debriefing.


The course director should be an active ELSO individual or center member with at least 5 years’ experience caring for ECMO. Exceptions to this may apply with the approval of ELSO Endorsement Committee.

Prior participation at an ELSO-hosted or endorsed course and simulation training is desired.


For a Comprehensive Simulation-Based ECMO Course or an ECMO Simulation Course, desirable requirements for simulation faculty are:

  • • Attended a simulation instructor course with formal debriefing training.

  • • Attendance at an ELSO-hosted or endorsed course is highly desirable.

  • • Maintains trainer status by teaching at least one course annually.


1. Application Submission

All documents uploaded to ELSO Academy for review at least 4-6 months in advance of planned educational activity.

Application payment due at beginning of application submission process.

2. Visit Preparation

Pre-survey meeting with ELSO representative, Applicant center Course Director and ELSO surveyor to review educational activity.

3. Survey Agreement

Signed contract with ELSO and host site, which outlines expectations to financial support ELSO surveyor visit. Hotel, Transportation and Honorarium agreement.

4. Site Survey

Using a standardized checklist, the surveyor will review all aspects of the course, scoring the various elements.

Survey findings and recommendations will be provided to the host site within 15 business days of the educational activity.

If ELSO Endorsement is not initially granted, a pathway to endorsement will be put forth by the ELSO Endorsement Committee for the host site to pursue and to reapply for endorsement.

5. Endorsement Agreement

At time of endorsement, the surveyor will specify if the course meets Step 1-Didactic requirements for certification (E-AEC), Step 2-Simulation requirements for certification (E-AEC), or both Step 1 and Step 2. The level of endorsement, including step number and description (Didactic and/or Simulation) will need to be clearly disclosed in all advertisements of the subsequent courses.

An endorsement contract will be provided to the center after successful completion of a site survey. The endorsement contract will outline terms of use of the ELSO logo and brand. Use of the ELSO endorsement logo or wording that implies ELSO-endorsement cannot be utilized until after execution of a contract.


The ELSO endorsed educational activity will be licensed/endorsed for a period of three years from the date of the signed endorsement contract.


The fee rate is based on the country the course is held in. For the United States, the fee is $2100 USD. please refer to Application Fee Calculator below.