HOME >> ARIZONA >> MARICOPA >> CNA TRAINING


CNA Certification Training Classes Maricopa AZ


How to Select the Right CNA School near Maricopa Arizona

Maricopa AZ Certified Nursing Assistant taking man's blood pressureOnce you have made a decision to practice in the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to begin the process of searching for CNA training classes near Maricopa AZ. As soon as you have obtained your certification, you will begin a rewarding career in one of the fastest growing occupations in health care within the Country. Even though it might seem like a complicated endeavor, it's imperative that you pick the best program to receive the necessary training and education. A number of future students start with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might additionally be considering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them at home. More on that alternative later. But doing your due diligence before deciding on a school involves much more than comparing the price or location. Such factors as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those subjects together with various other questions that you should be asking before you register in a CNA school. But to start 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 Certified Nursing Assistant

Maricopa AZ CNA helping man on crutches

Certified Nursing Assistants are responsible for many jobs in the Maricopa AZ hospitals, clinics and other healthcare facilities where they are employed. 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 main job duty is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are many and diverse, and in a hospital environment can include:

  • Administering basic care to patients
  • Checking patient's vital signs
  • Keeping a record of patient's health status
  • Bathing and dressing patients
  • Serving and assisting patients with meals
  • Moving patients to other areas

CNAs can also work in Maricopa 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 characterized as routine activities that most individuals accomplish daily without assistance, such as eating, dressing, or using the bathroom. Nursing assistants commonly build more of a bond with these patients since they usually stay in the facilities for extended time frames. Often, they may become the pipeline between the patient and the balance of the medical staff because of their relationships with their charges. Because of this, the CNA's knowledge can be a beneficial resource for preparing the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.

CNA Courses

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at community colleges or at Maricopa AZ vocational or trade schools. The length of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of training directed and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it's necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise 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 sure that the training is state certified. In addition to 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 Schools

Maricopa AZ woman taking CNA online trainingAttending CNA programs online is becoming a more preferred way to receive instruction and attain a certificate or diploma in Maricopa AZ. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your job and household obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online CNA school will make it more convenient to fit earning a certificate into your hectic schedule.

What to Ask CNA Degree Programs

Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many CNA schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see 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 agency. Aside from helping confirm that you receive a premium education and employment in the Maricopa AZ area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes 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.  Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well. It's imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Maricopa 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 considering 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 unhappy 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 superb reputation within the Maricopa AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification also. Ask if the schools have associations with local Maricopa AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

Learn How to Choose a CNA School

Enroll in the Right CNA Program

Picking the best certified nursing assistant college is arguably the most important step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are many aspects that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this article, it is essential that you select a CNA college and a certificate program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a CNA in Maricopa AZ.