How to Choose the Right Nursing Assistant Classes near Goodyear Arizona
Now that you have decided to enter the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of searching for CNA training programs near Goodyear AZ. As soon as you have obtained your certification, you will begin a gratifying career in one of the fastest growing positions in healthcare within the Country. Though it may well seem like a difficult endeavor, it's important that you select the ideal school to receive the appropriate training and education. Many prospective students start with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might also be debating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA program and attend them at home. More on that option later. But completing your due diligence before selecting a program consists of far more than comparing the cost or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be taken into account. We will be covering those subjects as well as several other questions that you should 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 type of instruction and credentials that are available.
The Job of a CNA
Certified Nursing Assistants are responsible for many functions in the Goodyear AZ hospitals, clinics and other medical organizations where they work. Per their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Since they are not licensed, they function under the guidance and oversight of either a licensed LPN or RN. Plus as nursing assistants, their prime job function is to help the licensed nurses that they work under. Their duties are many and varied, and in a hospital setting can include:
- Administering basic care to patients
- Checking patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Cleaning and dressing patients
- Serving and assisting patients with meals
- Moving patients to other rooms
CNAs can also practice in Goodyear AZ nursing homes or long term care centers. In those environments, nursing assistants are more engaged in aiding patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are characterized as routine activities that most individuals perform daily without assistance, including eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants typically build more of a bond with these patients since they usually remain in the facilities for extensive periods of time. Frequently, they may become the pipeline between the patient and the rest of the medical staff because of their relationships with their charges. As a result, the CNA's expertise can be a significant resource for planning the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA ProgramsIn contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at community colleges or at Goodyear AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within 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. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and every state has its specific requirements. So it's necessary to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise 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 sure that the training is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
Online CNA Programs
Attending CNA schools online is becoming a more in demand way to receive instruction and acquire a certificate or diploma in Goodyear AZ. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, some online CNA programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online CNA training program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your hectic schedule.
Why Become a Certified Nursing Assistant?
A Certified Nursing Assistant is a critical component of any Goodyear AZ healthcare organization. As a matter of fact, medical care couldn’t happen without CNAs. The CNA is responsible for the immediate care of residents or patients of the medical agency or facility that he or she is employed by. CNAs also help with ADLs such as eating, bathing and dressing. And they also have the responsibility of keeping their patients comfortable and safe. As a member of a team, the CNA works directly under a nurse, typically a Registerd Nurse. Nurses depend on CNAs for patient tests, taking vital signs, and their observations about each patient’s condition. CNAs also coordinate schedules with other healthcare professionals such as speech, occupational or physical therapists. The work can be physically strenuous, including positioning, lifting, and transferring patients during their shift. CNAs spend the majority of their day or evening on their feet because they always have a task at hand. But all in all, it’s the right job for people who like to keep busy and help patients as well as treat them with dignity and respect.
Questions to Ask CNA Schools
Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist 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 essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other programs.
- 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 ensure that you receive an excellent education and employment in the Goodyear AZ area, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification requirements for CNAs differ 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 essential that the school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Goodyear AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the CNA programs 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Goodyear AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for certification also. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby Goodyear AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Nurse Assistant Program
Enrolling in the best certified nursing assistant training program is perhaps the most critical step to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this content, it is critical that you pick a CNA school and a certificate program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a CNA in Goodyear AZ.