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CNA Certification Training Classes Hoover AL


How to Find the Right Certified Nursing Assistant School near Hoover Alabama

Hoover AL Nursing Assistant taking man's blood pressureOnce you have decided to enter the healthcare field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to begin the process of searching for CNA classes near Hoover AL. As soon as you have attained your certification, you will be starting a fulfilling career in one of the most rapidly increasing occupations in health care within the United States. Although it may seem like an overwhelming undertaking, it's imperative that you select the right school to acquire the appropriate training and education. Many prospective students begin with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You may additionally be debating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them at home. More on that alternative later. But performing your due diligence before selecting a program requires much more than comparing the price or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those issues along with various other questions that you need to be asking before you register in a CNA school. But first, let's discuss a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the type of instruction and credentials that are available.

The Duties of a Certified Nursing Assistant

Hoover AL Certified Nursing Assistant greeting man on crutches

Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many duties in the Hoover AL hospitals, clinics and other medical organizations where they work. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Because they are not licensed, they perform under the direction and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. Plus as nursing assistants, their primary job role is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are numerous and varied, and in a hospital setting may include:

  • Furnishing basic services to patients
  • Measuring patient's vital signs
  • Maintaining a record of patient's health status
  • Bathing and dressing patients
  • Serving and helping patients with meals
  • Conveying patients to other areas

CNAs can also work in Hoover AL nursing homes or long term care centers. In those environments, nursing assistants are more involved in assisting patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that the majority of people accomplish daily without help, including eating, dressing, or using the washroom. Nursing assistants usually build more of a bond with these patients since they often stay in the facilities for extended time frames. In many cases, they can end up being the channel between the patient and the rest of the medical staff thanks to their relationships with their charges. As a result, the CNA's expertise can be a beneficial resource for preparing the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.

CNA Certificates

Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be received at community colleges or at Hoover AL vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and every state has its own requirements. So it's important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state certified. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.

CNA Online Schools

Hoover AL student attending CNA online classesEnrolling in CNA schools online is emerging as a more preferred way to receive training and acquire a certificate or diploma in Hoover AL. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Concerning tuition, a number of online CNA programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online CNA program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your hectic schedule.

What to Ask CNA Training Classes

Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous CNA schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.

  • Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping verify that you receive a quality education and employment in the Hoover AL area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools.
  • Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required.  Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum certification standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, contact the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Hoover AL healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
  • Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA colleges you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Hoover AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with local Hoover AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.

Choose the Right Nurse Assistant School

Hoover AL Nursing Assistant with nursing home patientChoosing the ideal certified nursing assistant college is arguably the most critical step to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are many factors that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have highlighted within this content, it is critical that you select a CNA college and a certificate program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Hoover AL.