How to Enroll In the Right Certified Nursing Assistant School near Glendale Arizona
Once you have decided to enter the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of finding CNA classes near Glendale AZ. After you have obtained your certification, you will begin a gratifying career in one of the most rapidly increasing positions in medical care within the USA. Though it may seem like an overwhelming endeavor, it's imperative that you pick the ideal program to acquire the proper training and education. A number of 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 considering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them from home. More on that option later. But performing your due diligence prior to picking a program requires much more than comparing the tuition or location. Such things as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those issues together with a few other questions that you should be asking before you enroll in a CNA school. But first, let's talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the kind of instruction and credentials that are available.
The Role of a CNA
Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many tasks 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. Given that they are not licensed, they perform under the direction and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their primary job role is to assist the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are many and varied, and in a hospital setting can include:
- Furnishing basic care to patients
- Measuring patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Bathing and dressing patients
- Serving and assisting patients with meals
- Conveying patients to other rooms
CNAs might also work in Glendale AZ nursing homes or long term care centers. In those settings, nursing assistants are more engaged in aiding patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are defined as routine activities that most people carry out daily without help, including eating, dressing, or using the washroom. Nursing assistants commonly build more of a bond with these patients since they typically stay in the facilities for extended time periods. Often, they can end up being the channel between the patient and the rest of the medical staff because of their familiarity with their charges. As a result, the CNA's knowledge can be an useful resource for planning the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA TrainingUnlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at community colleges or at Glendale AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and each state has its specific requirements. So it's essential to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally 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 approved. As well as the training, each state mandates 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 becoming a more favored way to receive instruction and earn a certificate or diploma in Glendale AZ. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Regarding tuition, some online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your job and family commitments have left you with 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.
Things to Ask CNA Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges within Arizona and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares 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. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education and employment in the Glendale AZ area, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs vary from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Glendale AZ 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 schools you are looking at 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Glendale AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification also. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby Glendale AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best CNA Training
Deciding on the best certified nursing assistant school is arguably the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the health care field. There are many aspects that you should take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have highlighted within this article, it is important 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 select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a CNA in Glendale AZ.