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CNA Certification Training Classes Scottsdale AZ


How to Find the Best Certified Nursing Assistant School near Scottsdale Arizona

Scottsdale AZ Certified Nursing Assistant taking man's vital signsOnce 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 Scottsdale AZ. As soon as you have attained your certification, you will be starting a rewarding career in one of the most rapidly increasing occupations in health care within the United States. Although it might seem like a daunting endeavor, it's imperative that you select the best course to obtain the appropriate training and education. Many potential students start with the two most fundamental qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You may additionally be considering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them at home. More about that option later. But completing your due diligence prior to picking a program involves much more than comparing the cost or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be taken into account. We will be covering those issues together with several 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 offered.

The Duties of a CNA

Scottsdale AZ Certified Nursing Assistant assisting man on crutches

Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many tasks in the Scottsdale 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 guidance and oversight of either a licensed LPN or RN. Plus as nursing assistants, their prime job role is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are numerous and diverse, and in a hospital setting may include:

  • Furnishing basic services to patients
  • Taking patient's vital signs
  • Maintaining a record of patient's health status
  • Bathing and dressing patients
  • Serving and aiding patients with meals
  • Moving patients to other areas

CNAs can also practice in Scottsdale AZ nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those environments, nursing assistants are more engaged 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, including eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants typically develop more of a bond with these types of patients since they commonly stay in the facilities for extensive time periods. Often, they may become the channel between the patient and the balance of the medical staff due to their relationships with their charges. Consequently, the CNA's expertise can be a beneficial resource for preparing the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.

CNA Courses

In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at community colleges or at Scottsdale AZ vocational or trade schools. The length of the training can take anywhere from just one to three 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 have to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it's necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.

Online CNA Schools

Scottsdale AZ student attending CNA online classesEnrolling in CNA schools online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and acquire a certificate or diploma in Scottsdale AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, some online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward 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.

Questions to Ask CNA Colleges

Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many CNA schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.

  • 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you obtain a premium education and employment in the Scottsdale AZ area, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools.
  • Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites 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 essential that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum certification requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Scottsdale 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 colleges you are looking at 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Scottsdale AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Scottsdale AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.

Pick the Right Nurse Assistant Program

Scottsdale AZ Nursing Assistant with assisted living patientDeciding on the ideal certified nursing assistant training program is probably the most critical phase to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of aspects that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is essential that you choose 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 develop 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 CNA in Scottsdale AZ.