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How to Enroll In the Right Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program Near Oro Valley Arizona

Oro Valley Arizona CNA reviewing patient chart with NurseNow that you have decided to enter the medical field as a certified nursing assistant, it's time to start the process of searching for CNA training programs near Oro Valley AZ. As soon as you have attained your certification, you will launch a gratifying career in one of the fastest expanding occupations in healthcare within the USA. Even though it might seem like a difficult undertaking, it's imperative that you select the ideal school to obtain the proper training and education. A number of prospective students start with the two most fundamental qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might also be considering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA program and attend them from home. More concerning that option later. But doing your due diligence prior to deciding on a program involves much more than comparing the price or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must also be considered. We will be addressing those subjects as well as several other questions that you need to be asking before you enroll in a CNA school. But to start with, let's talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the type of training and credentials that are offered.

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The Duties of a Nursing Assistant

Oro Valley Arizona Nursing Assistant with senior female patient in nursing home

CNAs (certified nursing assistants) work alongside licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and RNs (registered nurses) to care for patients in a variety of healthcare environments, such as hospitals, medical clinics or nursing homes. CNAs provide daily care for patients, but they perform different tasks than RNs or LPNs, typically helping with activities of daily living such as bathing and dressing patients. RNs and LPNs require higher levels of education, while CNAs can can earn certification through comparatively short training courses at Oro Valley AZ area nursing or vocational schools, including online programs, or at local junior colleges.

CNA Courses

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at community colleges or at Oro Valley AZ vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have 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 minimum amount of instruction directed and every state has its own requirements. So it's necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.

CNA Online Classes

Oro Valley Arizona young female student taking CNA courses onlineAttending CNA schools online is growing into a more popular way to get instruction and acquire a certificate or diploma in Oro Valley AZ. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, some online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online CNA program will make it easier to fit earning a certificate into your active schedule.

What to Ask CNA Colleges

There are many CNA training schools within the greater Oro Valley Arizona area, but choosing one that offers an effective, quality program can be quite challenging. Since 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 Oro Valley AZ 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 Oro Valley Arizona 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 Arizona 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 to Become a CNA in Oro Valley

Pick the Right Oro Valley Nurse Assistant Program

Enrolling in the best certified nursing assistant college is arguably the most crucial step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are various aspects that you need to take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted within this article, it is critical that you pick a CNA school and a certificate program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using 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 hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a CNA in Oro Valley Arizona.


 

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