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How to Choose the Best Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program Near Foley Alabama

Foley Alabama Nursing Assistant reviewing patient chart with NurseOnce 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 Foley AL. After you have attained your certification, you will be starting a rewarding career in one of the fastest expanding positions in health care within the United States. Though it might seem like a daunting endeavor, it's important that you choose the best course to acquire the necessary training and education. A number of potential students start with the two most essential qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. You might also be pondering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA program and attend them from home. More on that option later. But performing your due diligence before picking a school involves far more than comparing the cost or location. Such things as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be taken into account. We will be covering those issues along with a few other questions that you need to be asking before you enroll in a CNA school. But to begin with, let's talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the type of training and credentials that are available.

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The Job of a Certified Nursing Assistant

Foley Alabama Nursing Assistant with senior woman in nursing home

CNAs (certified nursing assistants) work under LPNs (licensed practical nurses) and RNs (registered nurses) to care for patients in a multitude of healthcare settings, such as hospitals, medical clinics or nursing homes. CNAs provide daily care for patients, performing different functions than LPNs or RNs, usually helping with things like bathing and dressing patients. LPNs and RNs are more highly educated, while CNAs can can earn certification through relatively short training courses at Foley AL area nursing or vocational schools, including online programs, or at regional junior colleges.

CNA Certificates

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at community colleges or at Foley AL vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training 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 have 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 minimal period of instruction directed and that each 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 suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.

Online CNA Courses

Foley Alabama young female student enrolled in CNA classes onlineEnrolling in CNA schools online is becoming a more in demand way to receive training and acquire a certificate or diploma in Foley AL. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, some online CNA programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online CNA training program will make it more convenient to fit earning a certificate into your hectic schedule.

What to Ask CNA Training Programs

There are many CNA training schools within the greater Foley Alabama area, but selecting one that offers an effective, quality program can be quite challenging. As you are going to invest your valuable time, money and energy into this training, it’s important that you choose the right school to help ensure that you will become a qualified Certified Nursing Assistant. So always investigate properly before enrolling in any institution. One way to get a better idea about a prospective school and its quality is to interact with recent graduates or current students. You may be able do it online if the school has any discussion forums. And before making your final selection, you should also take some of the following additional factors into consideration. 

  • Location of CNA School Campus. First thing to note while selecting any CNA training school is its location and the distance you need to travel to reach the school.  If you prefer not to travel long distance, then you should select a school near your Foley AL residence. 
  • Accreditation. Select a CNA program which is accredited by one or more highly regarded organizations, such as the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing and Education (CCNE).  Accreditation ensures that the school adheres to all of the essential standards of education as set down by these specialized nursing institutions, thus guaranteeing you will be provided a quality education.
  • Class Sizes. You also need to examine the class and school size as some students opt for smaller schools and classes to get individual attention, while others may opt for bigger schools with more students.
  • Affiliations. The most important part of training as a Certified Nursing Assistant is the practical experience.  So when selecting a CNA training school always make sure that it is affiliated with Foley Alabama area nursing homes, hospitals or other health care facilities where you can intern and gain practical knowledge.
  • Facility. One of the key factors to consider when evaluating any CNA training school is the quality of the facilities available for practical training.  Before enrolling, visit the school and training facilities on campus. If possible, sit in on some classes. 
  • Tuition Fees and Scholarships. Tuition fees for CNA programs differ from school to school and are based on many factors, such as your status as a resident in Alabama or if you are an out-of-state student, and whether the school is public or private.  Many schools offer scholarships and financial aid, which can make education affordable or at least manageable for those with more limited finances.  Scholarship policies differ from school to school, so it’s important to inquire about available CNA scholarships before enrollment.

Find Out How Long Does it Take to Become a CNA in Foley

Pick the Best Foley Nurse Assistant School

Deciding on the right certified nursing assistant program is arguably the most important phase to starting a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of aspects that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this article, it is critical that you select a CNA college and a certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Foley Alabama.


 

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