How to Choose the Best Certified Nursing Assistant Classes near Goodyear Arizona
Once you have decided to enter the healthcare field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of searching for CNA training classes near Goodyear AZ. As soon as you have obtained your certification, you will begin a fulfilling career in one of the most rapidly expanding occupations in health care within the Country. Though it might seem like a complicated endeavor, it's imperative that you select the right course to receive the appropriate training and education. A number of prospective students begin with the two most fundamental qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might additionally be contemplating 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 completing your due diligence prior to choosing a program consists of far more than comparing the price or location. Such factors as accreditation and the reputation of the school must also be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those subjects as well as several other questions that you should be asking before you enroll in a CNA school. But first, let's discuss a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the kind of training and credentials that are offered.
The Duties of a Certified Nursing Assistant
Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many duties in the Goodyear AZ hospitals, clinics and other healthcare facilities where they are employed. Per their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Because they are not licensed, they function under the direction and oversight of either a licensed LPN or RN. Plus as nursing assistants, their primary job role is to assist the licensed nurses that they work under. Their duties are many and varied, and in a hospital setting can include:
- Furnishing basic care to patients
- Measuring patient's vital signs
- Maintaining a record of patient's health status
- Bathing and dressing patients
- Serving and helping patients with meals
- Transferring patients to other rooms
CNAs may also practice in Goodyear AZ nursing homes or long term care centers. In those settings, nursing assistants are more involved in helping patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are defined as routine activities that the majority of people perform daily without assistance, such as eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants typically build more of a bond with these types of patients since they usually stay in the facilities for extensive time periods. Frequently, they can become the channel between the patient and the rest of the medical staff thanks to their familiarity with their charges. Because of this, the CNA's expertise can be a valued resource for preparing the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA CoursesUnlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at community colleges or at Goodyear AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program 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 obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training directed and every state has its own prerequisites. So it's important to make sure that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip 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 may be additional prerequisites as well.
Online CNA Schools
Enrolling in CNA training online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain instruction and earn a certificate or diploma in Goodyear AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, many online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary 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 such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online CNA training program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask CNA Schools
Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following pointers to begin 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 necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.
- 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 agency. Besides helping confirm that you receive a premium education and employment in the Goodyear AZ area, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well. It's essential that the school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also preps you to meet the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, 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 Goodyear 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Goodyear AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get 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. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for certification too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Goodyear AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Choose the Best CNA Program
Choosing the ideal certified nursing assistant program is potentially the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are various aspects that you need to think about when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have stressed within this post, it is critical that you pick a CNA college and a certificate program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Goodyear AZ.