How to Enroll In the Right Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program near Lanett Alabama
Now that you have made a decision to practice in the healthcare field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of finding CNA training classes near Lanett AL. Once you have attained your certification, you will begin a fulfilling career in one of the most rapidly growing positions in health care within the USA. Even though it may seem like a complicated task, it's important that you choose the best program to receive the appropriate training and education. Many potential students start with the two most fundamental qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. You may also be contemplating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them from home. More concerning that option later. But completing your due diligence prior to deciding on a program involves far more than comparing the cost or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must also be considered. We will be covering those subjects together with various other questions that you need to be asking before you register 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 Role of a Nursing Assistant
Certified Nursing Assistants perform many duties in the Lanett AL hospitals, clinics and other health care facilities where they work. Per their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but rather are certified. Since they are not licensed, they function under the guidance and oversight of either a licensed LPN or RN. Plus as nursing assistants, their main job duty is to aid the licensed nurses that they work under. Their duties are numerous and diverse, and in a hospital setting may include:
- Administering basic care to patients
- Checking patient's vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient's health status
- Bathing and dressing patients
- Serving and aiding patients with meals
- Transferring patients to other rooms
CNAs can also work in Lanett AL 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 most individuals accomplish daily without help, for example eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants commonly develop more of a bond with these patients since they commonly reside in the facilities for prolonged time frames. In many cases, they may end up being the conduit between the patient and the rest of the medical staff thanks to their relationships with their charges. As a result, the CNA's expertise can be a valued resource for planning the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
Certified Nursing Assistant DiplomasUnlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at community colleges or at Lanett AL vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three 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 need to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and every state has its specific requirements. So it's necessary to make sure that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
CNA Online Schools
Attending CNA programs online is growing into a more preferred way to receive training and acquire a certificate or diploma in Lanett AL. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your job and household commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online CNA training program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your active schedule.
What to Ask Certified Nursing Assistant Degree Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous CNA schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the field.
- 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you get a quality education and employment in the Lanett AL area, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites 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 completed, as well. It's essential that the school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also preps you to meet the minimum certification standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, contact the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Lanett AL healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments 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 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 confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Lanett AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Lanett AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Lanett CNA School
Enrolling in the best certified nursing assistant college is potentially the most important first step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are many aspects that you need to consider when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is critical that you pick a CNA college and a certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Lanett AL.