How to Find the Right Certified Nursing Assistant School near East Florence Alabama
Now that you have made a decision to practice in the healthcare field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to begin the process of finding CNA training programs near East Florence AL. As soon as you have achieved your certification, you will launch a rewarding career in one of the most rapidly expanding positions in medical care within the Country. Even though it may seem like a challenging undertaking, it's important that you choose the ideal program to acquire the necessary training and education. Many future students begin with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might additionally be pondering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA program and attend them at home. More about that alternative later. But performing your due diligence prior to deciding on a training course requires far more than comparing the tuition or location. Such factors as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those topics together with various other questions that you need to be asking before you register in a CNA school. But to start with, let's talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the kind of instruction and credentials that are available.
The Duties of a Nursing Assistant
Certified Nursing Assistants perform many tasks in the East Florence AL hospitals, practices and other health care organizations where they are employed. 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. And as nursing assistants, their prime 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 care to patients
- Taking patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Bathing and dressing patients
- Serving and aiding patients with meals
- Conveying patients to other areas
CNAs can also work in East Florence AL nursing homes or long term care centers. In those settings, nursing assistants are more involved in assisting patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that most people perform daily without aid, such as eating, dressing, or using the bathroom. Nursing assistants typically build more of a bond with these patients since they typically stay in the facilities for prolonged periods of time. Frequently, they may end up being the pipeline between the patient and the rest of the medical staff because of their familiarity with their charges. Because of this, the CNA's expertise can be a significant resource for planning the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
CNA ProgramsUnlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at community colleges or at East Florence AL vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive 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 minimal period of instruction mandated and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it's important to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to check 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 mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Online CNA Certificates
Attending CNA training online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and attain a certificate or diploma in East Florence AL. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend college for many students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online CNA training program will make it more convenient to fit earning a certificate into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask CNA Degree Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges throughout Alabama 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 already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the CNA certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a quality education and employment in the East Florence AL area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs differ from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum certification standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some East Florence AL 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the East Florence AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire 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 prerequisites for certification too. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby East Florence AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right East Florence Nurse Assistant School
Selecting the ideal certified nursing assistant school is arguably the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are various aspects that you should consider when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have pointed out within this content, it is essential that you select a CNA school and a certificate program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list 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 desire to succeed, you can become a CNA in East Florence AL.