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How to Select the Best Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program Near Prescott Valley Arizona

Prescott Valley Arizona Nursing Assistant going over patient file with NurseOnce 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 Prescott Valley AZ. After you have achieved your certification, you will begin a gratifying career in one of the most rapidly growing occupations in health care within the Country. Even though it may seem like a challenging undertaking, it's imperative that you pick the best school to acquire the necessary training and education. A number of future students start with the two most basic qualifications, which are the location of the school and the cost of tuition. You might additionally be contemplating whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online CNA course and attend them from home. More about that option later. But completing your due diligence before selecting a program requires far more than comparing the cost or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be considered. We will be addressing those issues as well as various other questions that you should 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 type of training and credentials that are offered.

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The Role of a Certified Nursing Assistant

Prescott Valley Arizona Nursing Assistant with senior woman in nursing home

Certified Nursing Assistants complete many jobs in the Prescott Valley AZ hospitals, practices and other medical organizations where they are employed. Per their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but rather are certified. Because they are not licensed, they work under the guidance and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their main job function is to help the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are many and diverse, and in a hospital setting can include:

  • Providing basic services to patients
  • Measuring patient's vital signs
  • Maintaining a record of patient's health status
  • Cleaning and dressing patients
  • Serving and assisting patients with meals
  • Transporting patients to other rooms

CNAs might also practice in Prescott Valley AZ nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those environments, nursing assistants are more involved in assisting patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that most individuals perform daily without aid, including eating, dressing, or using the washroom. Nursing assistants typically build more of a bond with these types of patients since they commonly reside in the facilities for extensive periods of time. Often, they may become the pipeline between the patient and the rest of the medical staff thanks to their relationships with their charges. As a result, the CNA's knowledge can be a valued resource for planning the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.

CNA Courses

In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be received at community colleges or at Prescott Valley AZ 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. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or "hands-on" training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of training directed and that each state has its own requirements. So it's important to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills 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 is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.

Online CNA Programs

Prescott Valley Arizona young woman student enrolled in CNA classes onlineEnrolling in CNA schools online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain instruction and attain a certificate or diploma in Prescott Valley AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, many online CNA programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). So if your work and family responsibilities 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 busy schedule.

What to Ask CNA Courses

Once you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges within 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 manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.

  • 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you get an excellent education and employment in the Prescott Valley AZ area, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools.
  • Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs vary from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required.  Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum certification standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Arizona school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Prescott Valley AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Prescott Valley AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification too. Check if the schools have associations with nearby Prescott Valley AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

More on How Long Does it Take to Become a CNA in Prescott Valley

Pick the Right Prescott Valley Nurse Assistant Program

Picking the ideal certified nursing assistant degree program is potentially the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are many factors that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have highlighted in this content, it is critical that you choose a CNA college and a certificate program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a CNA in Prescott Valley Arizona.


 

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