How to Find the Best Certified Nursing Assistant College near Chandler Arizona
Once you have made a decision to practice in the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of finding CNA training classes near Chandler AZ. As soon as you have obtained your certification, you will launch a fulfilling career in one of the most rapidly growing positions in healthcare within the USA. Even though it might seem like a challenging undertaking, it's imperative that you pick the ideal school to acquire the necessary training and education. Many potential students start with the two most basic qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. You may additionally be considering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them at home. More concerning that alternative later. But performing your due diligence before deciding on a training course entails far more than comparing the price or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must also be considered. We will be addressing those topics as well as various other questions that you need to be asking before you enroll in a CNA school. But to begin with, let's discuss a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the kind of training and credentials that are offered.
The Function of a CNA
Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many jobs in the Chandler AZ hospitals, practices and other health organizations where they work. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Since they are not licensed, they function under the direction and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their prime job role is to help the licensed nurses that they work under. Their duties are numerous and diverse, and in a hospital setting might include:
- Providing basic care to patients
- Reading patient's vital signs
- Maintaining a record of patient's health status
- Cleaning and dressing patients
- Serving and assisting patients with meals
- Conveying patients to other areas
CNAs may also practice in Chandler AZ nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those settings, nursing assistants are more involved in helping patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that the majority of people carry out daily without aid, for example eating, dressing, or using the bathroom. Nursing assistants typically build more of a bond with these patients since they typically reside in the facilities for extended time periods. In many cases, they may end up being the conduit between the patient and the balance of the medical staff because of their relationships with their charges. As a result, the CNA's knowledge can be a significant resource for preparing the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA TrainingIn contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at community colleges or at Chandler AZ vocational or trade schools. The length of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it's important to make certain that the 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 get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional prerequisites as well.
CNA Online Training
Attending CNA training online is emerging as a more popular way to receive training and earn a certificate or diploma in Chandler AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, many online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). And so if your job and family commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online CNA school will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your active schedule.
Things to Ask CNA Degree Programs
Once you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous CNA schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping verify that you get a quality education and employment in the Chandler AZ area, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification requirements for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Chandler AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA programs you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to finish 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 substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Chandler AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Chandler AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Choose the Best CNA Training
Picking the right certified nursing assistant college is perhaps the most important first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of variables that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this content, it is essential that you choose a CNA school and a certificate program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a CNA in Chandler AZ.