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CNA Certification Training Classes Montgomery AL


How to Choose the Best CNA Program near Montgomery Alabama

Montgomery AL Nursing Assistant taking patient's blood pressureOnce you have decided to enter the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of finding CNA training classes near Montgomery AL. After you have achieved your certification, you will begin a fulfilling career in one of the fastest growing positions in medical care within the USA. Even though it might seem like a complicated task, it's important that you pick the ideal school to receive the necessary training and education. Many future students start with the two most basic qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might also be pondering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them at home. More regarding that alternative later. But performing your due diligence prior to picking a program involves much more than comparing the price or location. Such things as accreditation and the reputation of the school must also be taken into account. 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 to start with, let's talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the kind of training and credentials that are offered.

The Job of a Certified Nursing Assistant

Montgomery AL CNA helping patient

Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many jobs in the Montgomery AL hospitals, clinics and other health organizations where they work. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Given that 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 duties are many and varied, and in a hospital environment might include:

  • Administering basic care to patients
  • Measuring patient's vital signs
  • Maintaining a record of patient's health status
  • Bathing and dressing patients
  • Serving and aiding patients with meals
  • Transporting patients to other areas

CNAs can also work in Montgomery AL nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those settings, nursing assistants are more engaged in helping patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are defined as routine activities that most people accomplish daily without assistance, for example eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants commonly build more of a bond with these types of patients since they typically stay in the facilities for extended time frames. Often, they may become the channel between the patient and the rest of the medical staff because of their familiarity with their charges. Consequently, the CNA's expertise can be an useful resource for planning the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.

CNA Diplomas

Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at community colleges or at Montgomery AL vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction directed and that every state has its specific requirements. So it's important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills 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 sure 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 can be additional prerequisites as well.

Online CNA Training

Montgomery AL woman attending online CNA coursesAttending CNA training online is becoming a more preferred way to receive training and earn a certificate or diploma in Montgomery AL. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your work and family commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online CNA program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your active schedule.

Questions to Ask CNA Courses

Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and whether 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 throughout Alabama and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.

  • Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you get a premium education and employment in the Montgomery AL area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools.
  • Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites for CNAs differ from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required.  Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum certification requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, contact the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Montgomery 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Montgomery AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification too. Find out if the schools have associations with local Montgomery AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

Choose the Right CNA School

Montgomery AL Nursing Assistant with nursing home patientPicking the right certified nursing assistant school is probably the most critical phase to launching a new career in the health care field. There are many variables that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is important that you choose a CNA school and a certificate program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Montgomery AL.