How to Find the Best Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program near Prescott Valley 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 training classes near Prescott Valley AZ. Once you have attained your certification, you will be starting a fulfilling career in one of the most rapidly increasing positions in healthcare within the Country. Although it may well seem like a daunting undertaking, it's important that you select the ideal school to acquire the necessary training and education. Many potential students begin with the two most fundamental qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. You might also be contemplating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA program and attend them from home. More on that alternative later. But completing your due diligence prior to deciding on a program entails much more than comparing the tuition or location. Such things as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be considered. We will be covering those issues along with several other questions that you need to be asking before you enroll 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 available.
The Role of a CNA
Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many duties in the Prescott Valley AZ hospitals, clinics and other medical 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 direction and management of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their primary job function is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are numerous and diverse, and in a hospital setting might include:
- Furnishing basic care to patients
- Reading patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Cleaning and dressing patients
- Serving and helping patients with meals
- Conveying patients to other areas
CNAs may also work in Prescott Valley AZ nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those settings, nursing assistants are more involved in assisting patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are defined as routine activities that the majority of people perform daily without help, such as eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants usually build more of a bond with these types of patients since they often remain in the facilities for prolonged periods of time. Often, they may end up being the conduit between the patient and the rest of the medical staff thanks to their familiarity with their charges. Consequently, the CNA's knowledge can be a beneficial resource for planning the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA ProgramsUnlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at community colleges or at Prescott Valley AZ vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction mandated and that each state has its own requirements. So it's important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only satisfies 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 education is state approved. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.
CNA Online Training
Enrolling in CNA classes online is becoming a more popular way to receive instruction and earn a certificate or diploma in Prescott Valley AZ. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online CNA programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). And so if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online CNA school will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your busy schedule.
Why Become a Certified Nursing Assistant?
A Certified Nursing Assistant is a critical part of any Prescott Valley AZ medical team. In fact, medical care couldn’t happen without CNAs. The CNA is responsible for the direct care of patients or residents of the medical facility or agency that she or he works for. CNAs also assist with daily activities such as eating, bathing and dressing. And they also have a role in keeping their patients safe and comfortable. As a member of a team, the CNA reports to a nurse, most often an RN. Nurses rely on CNAs for patient vital signs, tests, and their feedback about the condition of each of their patients. CNAs also coordinate schedules with other medical professionals such as physical, occupational, or speech therapists. The job can be physically demanding, including positioning, lifting, and moving patients during their shift. CNAs spend most of their day or evening on their feet because there is always something to do. But all in all, it’s the perfect profession for people who like to keep busy and help patients while treating them with respect and dignity.
Things to Ask CNA Training Classes
Now that you have determined which nursing program to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your selection 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 organization. In addition to helping ensure that you get a quality education and employment in the Prescott Valley AZ area, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification requirements for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, contact the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Prescott Valley 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Prescott Valley AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain 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. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Prescott Valley AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right CNA Training
Picking the right certified nursing assistant training program is potentially the most critical first step to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of variables that you need to think about when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this post, it is important 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 checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Prescott Valley AZ.