How to Select a CNA School near Alexander City 35010
Good luck regarding your decision to become a CNA and enroll in certified nursing assistant training near Alexander City AL. As soon as you have achieved your certification, you will be starting a gratifying career in one of the most rapidly expanding positions in health care within the Country. Even though it might seem like a daunting endeavor, it’s essential that you pick the best program 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 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 concerning that option later. But performing your due diligence prior to choosing a school consists of far more than comparing the price or location. Such things as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those issues as well as a few 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 kind of training and credentials that are available.
The Job of a Nursing Assistant
Certified Nursing Assistants perform many functions in the Alexander City AL hospitals, practices and other medical facilities where they are employed. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Since they are not licensed, they work under the guidance and management of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their main job duty is to assist the licensed nurses that they work under. Their duties are many and diverse, and in a hospital setting can include:
- Providing basic services to patients
- Reading patient’s vital signs
- Maintaining a record of patient’s health status
- Cleaning and dressing patients
- Serving and assisting patients with meals
- Conveying patients to other areas
CNAs can also practice in Alexander City AL 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 characterized as routine activities that most people perform daily without help, for example eating, dressing, or using the restroom. Nursing assistants typically build more of a bond with these types of patients since they often stay in the facilities for extended periods of time. Often, they can end up being the channel between the patient and the balance of the medical staff because of their relationships with their charges. Consequently, the CNA’s knowledge can be a significant resource for preparing the proper care and treatment of long term care patients.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at community colleges or at Alexander City AL vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required 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 minimal period of training required and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make sure that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course 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 might be additional prerequisites as well.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options to choose from to become a nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Alexander City AL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so be sure to contact the Alabama board of nursing for any state requirements.
Things to Ask CNA Colleges
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are many CNA schools and colleges throughout Alabama and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a premium education and employment in the Alexander City AL area, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification and Licensing Preparation. Certification and Licensing requirements for nurses differ from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. For RN and LPN licensing in all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum certification or licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, get in touch with the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Alexander City AL 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 programs you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete 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 confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Alexander City AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for certification as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Alexander City AL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
CNA Online Programs
Attending CNA programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to get training and attain a certificate or diploma in Alexander City AL. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, many online CNA programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Therefore if your work and household obligations have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online CNA school will make it more convenient to fit earning a certificate into your active schedule.
Considering CNA Classes Near Alexander City Alabama?
If you have decided to enroll in a CNA Training Program in the Alexander City AL area, the following article may provide some interesting and useful information about the location of your new school campus.
Alexander City, Alabama
Alexander City, known to locals as "Alex City", is a city in Tallapoosa County, Alabama, United States, with a population of some 14,875. It is known for Lake Martin with its 750 miles (1,210 km) of wooded shoreline and 44,000 acres (180 km2) of water. Lake Martin stands on the Tallapoosa River and offers boating, swimming, fishing, golfing, and camping. Many neighborhoods and luxury homes are located on the lake.
Alexander City was incorporated in 1872 as Youngsville, after its founder James Young. In 1873, the Savannah and Memphis Railroad came to the city. The city was renamed in honor of the railroad's President Edward Porter Alexander, hero of the Battle of Gettysburg for the Confederate States.
On June 13, 1902, at 1 pm, a fire broke out in the Alexander City Machine shop and destroyed much of the town. At the time, Alexander City did not have a water system and all buildings, including the telegraph office, post office and three banks were burned.
Enroll in the Right CNA Training Classes near Alexander City AL
Picking the best certified nursing assistant program is arguably the most critical first step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are a number of factors that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this article, it is important that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in Alexander City AL.
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