How to Select the Best Nursing Assistant School near Glendale Arizona
Once you have made a decision to practice in the healthcare field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of searching for CNA training classes near Glendale AZ. Once you have obtained your certification, you will launch a gratifying career in one of the most rapidly expanding positions in healthcare within the USA. Although it may well seem like an overwhelming task, it's imperative that you pick the ideal program to obtain the necessary training and education. A number of prospective students begin with the two most basic qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. You may additionally be debating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them from home. More regarding that alternative later. But performing your due diligence prior to choosing a training course requires far more than comparing the tuition or location. Such factors as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be taken into account. We will be covering those issues together with several other questions that you need to be asking before you register in a CNA school. But to begin with, let's talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the kind of training and credentials that are offered.
The Role of a CNA
Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many duties in the Glendale AZ hospitals, practices and other health care facilities where they work. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but rather are certified. Because they are not licensed, they work under the guidance and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their main job function is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are many and diverse, and in a hospital setting might include:
- Furnishing basic services to patients
- Checking patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Bathing and dressing patients
- Serving and helping patients with meals
- Moving patients to other rooms
CNAs might also practice in Glendale AZ nursing homes or long term care centers. In those environments, nursing assistants are more involved in aiding patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that the majority of people carry out daily without aid, including eating, dressing, or using the washroom. Nursing assistants typically develop more of a bond with these types of patients since they commonly stay in the facilities for extended time frames. In many cases, they may end up being the channel between the patient and the balance of the medical staff due to their familiarity with their charges. Consequently, the CNA's knowledge can be a valued resource for planning the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA CoursesIn contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at community colleges or at Glendale AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction directed and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it's crucial to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.
CNA Online Programs
Attending CNA programs online is growing into a more popular way to obtain instruction and earn a certificate or diploma in Glendale AZ. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). And so if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online CNA school will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your busy schedule.
What to Ask CNA Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. 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 choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection 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 organization. Aside from helping verify that you get a quality education and employment in the Glendale AZ area, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification requirements for CNAs vary from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum certification requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, contact the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Glendale 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 schools you are considering 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Glendale AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get 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. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local Glendale AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right Nurse Assistant Training
Deciding on the ideal certified nursing assistant training program is perhaps the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are various variables that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized in this post, it is critical that you pick a CNA school and a certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a CNA in Glendale AZ.