How to Enroll In the Right Certified Nursing Assistant School near Scottsdale 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 programs near Scottsdale AZ. After you have earned your certification, you will begin a fulfilling career in one of the most rapidly expanding occupations in health care within the Country. Even though it might seem like a difficult task, it's imperative that you choose the best course to obtain the necessary training and education. Many prospective students begin with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You may additionally be pondering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA program and attend them from home. More concerning that alternative later. But completing your due diligence before picking a program involves much 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 issues as well as various other questions that you need to 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 available.
The Function of a CNA
Certified Nursing Assistants perform many functions in the Scottsdale AZ hospitals, clinics and other health facilities where they work. Per their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but rather are certified. Because they are not licensed, they perform under the direction and oversight of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their primary job role is to help the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are numerous and diverse, and in a hospital setting may include:
- Furnishing 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 may also work in Scottsdale AZ nursing homes or long term care centers. In those settings, nursing assistants are more involved in aiding patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that most people carry out daily without assistance, for example eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants usually build more of a bond with these patients since they usually remain in the facilities for extensive periods of time. In many cases, they may end up being the channel between the patient and the rest of the medical staff because of their relationships with their charges. Because of this, the CNA's knowledge can be a valued resource for preparing the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA CoursesIn contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at community colleges or at Scottsdale AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction required and each state has its specific requirements. So it's crucial to make sure that the course you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education 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 additional prerequisites as well.
Online CNA Classes
Enrolling in CNA training online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and acquire a certificate or diploma in Scottsdale AZ. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, many online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your work and household commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online CNA school will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your busy schedule.
Should You Become a CNA?
A Certified Nursing Assistant is a critical part of any Scottsdale AZ healthcare team. As a matter of fact, health care wouldn’t be possible without CNAs. The CNA is responsible for the immediate care of residents or patients of the healthcare facility or agency that she or he works for. CNAs also assist with activities of daily living such as dressing, bathing and eating. And they also have the responsibility of keeping their patients safe and comfortable. As a team member, the CNA works directly under a nurse, most often an RN. Nurses rely on CNAs for patient tests, taking vital signs, and their reports about the condition of each of their patients. CNAs also coordinate schedules with other healthcare professionals such as speech, occupational or physical therapists. The work can be physically strenuous, including lifting, positioning, and moving patients during their work shift. CNAs spend most of their time on their feet because there is always something to do. But all in all, it’s the right job for those who like to keep busy and help patients while treating them with dignity and respect.
What to Ask CNA Courses
Now that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous CNA schools and colleges within Arizona and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the primary two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, 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 as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure 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 offered for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well. It's important that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum certification requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact 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 programs 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Scottsdale AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Scottsdale AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Nurse Assistant Training
Selecting the right certified nursing assistant program is probably the most critical phase to starting a new career in the health care field. There are a number of aspects that you should take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is essential that you choose a CNA school and a certificate program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to select 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 certified nursing assistant in Scottsdale AZ.