How to Enroll In the Right Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program Near Florence Arizona
Now that you have decided to enter the healthcare field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of searching for CNA training classes near Florence AZ. Once you have earned your certification, you will launch a gratifying career in one of the most rapidly growing positions in health care within the Country. Although it might seem like an overwhelming task, it's imperative that you pick the right program to receive the proper training and education. A number of potential students begin with the two most basic qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You may also be contemplating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them at home. More concerning that alternative later. But completing your due diligence prior to selecting a program requires far more than comparing the price or location. Such factors as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be taken into consideration. We will be covering those subjects along with various other questions that you should be asking before you register in a CNA school. But to start with, let's discuss a little bit about the type of instruction and credentials that are available.
It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your CNA Career
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at community colleges or at Florence AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program 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 have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction required and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it's important to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but likewise 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 approved. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
CNA Online Training
Attending CNA programs online is growing into a more popular way to receive training and acquire a certificate or diploma in Florence AZ. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, many online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can 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). So if your job and family commitments have left you with limited 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.
Things to Ask CNA Training Classes
Once you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- 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 recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping confirm that you receive a quality education and employment in the Florence AZ area, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites for CNAs vary from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's important that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Florence 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 schools you are considering 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It's also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Florence AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for certification too. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby Florence AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.