How to Pick the Right CNA Training Program near Rogers Arkansas
Once you have decided to enter the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to begin the process of finding CNA classes near Rogers AR. After you have obtained your certification, you will launch a rewarding career in one of the fastest expanding positions in healthcare within the Country. Even though it may well seem like a challenging undertaking, it's essential that you choose the ideal course to obtain the appropriate training and education. A number of future students begin with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost 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 on that option later. But performing your due diligence before deciding on a training course consists of much more than comparing the cost or location. Such factors as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be taken into account. We will be covering those subjects along with various other questions that you need to 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 instruction and credentials that are offered.
The Job of a Nursing Assistant
Certified Nursing Assistants are responsible for many tasks in the Rogers AR hospitals, practices and other medical organizations where they work. Per 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 management of either a licensed LPN or RN. Plus as nursing assistants, their primary job function is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are many and diverse, and in a hospital environment may include:
- Administering basic services to patients
- Taking patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Bathing and dressing patients
- Serving and helping patients with meals
- Transporting patients to other areas
CNAs might also practice in Rogers AR nursing homes or long term care facilities. 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, for example eating, dressing, or using the washroom. Nursing assistants usually develop more of a bond with these types of patients since they usually remain in the facilities for prolonged periods of time. In many cases, they can end up being the pipeline 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 an useful resource for planning the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA CoursesUnlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at community colleges or at Rogers AR 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 required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training mandated and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it's important to make sure that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training course 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 Schools
Attending CNA training online is emerging as a more favored way to get instruction and attain a certificate or diploma in Rogers AR. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, many online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your job and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online CNA program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask CNA Degree Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges throughout Arkansas and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping verify that you obtain an excellent education and employment in the Rogers AR area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered 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. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum certification standards for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Arkansas school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Rogers AR 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 complete 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 substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Rogers AR healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for certification as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Rogers AR hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Nurse Assistant School
Picking the right certified nursing assistant school is perhaps the most critical phase to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are various factors that you need to take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is critical that you choose a CNA school and a certificate program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a CNA in Rogers AR.