How to Find the Right CNA Program near West Memphis Arkansas
So you have decided to practice as a CNA and enroll in certified nursing assistant classes near West Memphis AR. As soon as you have achieved your certification, you will begin a rewarding career in one of the most rapidly growing positions in medical care within the Country. Although it might seem like a difficult endeavor, it’s essential that you choose the best CNA program to obtain the proper training and education. Many potential students start with the two most basic qualifications, which are the location of the school and the price of tuition. You might also be pondering whether to attend CNA classes on campus, or enroll in an online program and attend them from home. More regarding that option later. But completing your due diligence prior to selecting a CNA program consists of much more than comparing the cost or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must additionally be considered. We will be addressing those topics as well as a few other questions that you should 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.
The Job of a Nursing Assistant in West Memphis AR
Certified Nursing Assistants complete many tasks in the West Memphis AR hospitals, clinics and other healthcare organizations where they work. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but rather are certified. Because they are not licensed, they perform under the direction and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their main job role is to help the licensed nurses that they work under. Their responsibilities are many and diverse, and in a hospital environment might include:
- Furnishing basic services to patients
- Checking patient’s vital signs
- Maintaining a record of patient’s health status
- Cleaning and dressing patients
- Serving and aiding patients with meals
- Transporting patients to other areas
CNAs can also work in West Memphis AR nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those settings, nursing assistants are more involved in supporting patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are identified as routine activities that most individuals perform daily without aid, for example eating, dressing, or using the bathroom. Nursing assistants commonly build more of a bond with these patients since they commonly reside in the facilities for extensive periods of time. In many cases, they can end up being the pipeline between the patient and the rest of the medical staff because of their familiarity with their charges. As a result, the CNA’s knowledge can be a beneficial resource for planning the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants in West Memphis AR do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just 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 instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction required and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make sure that the program 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 sure that the training is state certified. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
Online CNA Training
Attending CNA classes online is growing into a more in demand way to receive training and attain a nursing credential. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local West Memphis AR healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, some online programs are less expensive than other on campus options. 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. Therefore if your job and family obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online CNA program will make it more convenient to fit an education into your active schedule.
What to Ask CNA Nursing Training Classes
Once you have selected which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of CNA schools and colleges within Arkansas and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school relative to West Memphis AR as well as the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other schools.
Is the CNA program accredited? It’s important that the West Memphis AR school and program that you enroll in is accredited. One of the more highly regarded accrediting authorities is the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC). CNA schools and programs that have been accredited by the NLNAC are guaranteed to not only provide a quality education but to be state approved as well. Earning a certificate or diploma from an accredited school is also more likely to be credited towards a more advanced nursing degree at another accredited school. And finally, accreditation makes your training more valuable in the job market.
Is the CNA course state approved? Before enrolling in a training course near West Memphis AR, make sure that it complies with the certification requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing. It should not only satisfy the minimum federal requirement of 75 hours, 16 of which must be clinical training, but any additional state requirements as well. As previously mentioned, if the CNA course is accredited by NLNAC it will be guaranteed to be state approved.
What is the Pass Rate for the State Exam? It’s preferable to enroll in a nursing assistant school near West Memphis AR with a pass rate for the state licensing exam of at least 75% for its graduates. If fewer than 75% are passing, it may be an indication that the curriculum and/or the instructors are not effectively training the students. Arkansas posts a list of state CNA schools with their state licensing exam pass rates.
Is there an Internship Program? Find out if the schools you are considering sponsor internships with West Memphis AR healthcare facilities. They are a great way to get hands-on clinical experience not available in a classroom or lab setting. As an additional benefit, they can help students establish relationships within the local medical community. They also look good on resumes. Also check to see if tutoring is available as needed. Other options may include an internet school forum or chat room where students can ask questions and share knowledge.
Is there a Job Placement Program? A job placement program can be of great assistance to a graduating student in finding that first nursing position. Find out how many students are being placed in jobs with the assistance of the school. If a school has a high job placement rate, it’s a confirmation that its reputation within the West Memphis AR medical community is exemplary. It also confirms that the school has a broad network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment after graduation.
Where is the school located? The campus will need to be within driving distance of your West Memphis AR residence unless you are able to relocate. If you enroll in an online program, find out where the clinical portion of your training is available. If a school has an internship program, most likely the placements will be within its local area. Also keep in mind that if you enroll in an out-of-state school, or even out of area for many community colleges, the tuition costs as a non-resident may be higher.
How large are the classes? Ask the schools you are considering on average how large their classes are. Smaller classes usually provide more access to teachers when students have questions or need extra help. In contrast, larger classes tend to be more impersonal and limit one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a couple of the classes before enrolling so that you can experience the level of interaction between students and instructors.
What is the Program’s total cost? CNA training and tuition can vary not only among schools, but from state to state depending on certification requirements. In addition to tuition, there are other costs such as commuting expenses, textbooks and other materials. When comparing schools remember to include all costs required for your education. If you do decide to attend an online school, some of the expenses may be reduced. Most schools have financial aid departments, so be sure to find out what is available in the West Memphis AR area.
Can the Program accommodate your Schedule? Finally, you will need to make sure that the program you select offers classes at a time that you can attend. If you are still working and need to attend classes at night or on weekends near West Memphis AR, make sure they are available. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that is an option as well. Even if you have decided to attend classes online, you will still need to confirm when clinical training hours are offered. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or other obligations.
Considering CNA Classes near West Memphis AR?
West Memphis, Arkansas
West Memphis is the largest city in Crittenden County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 26,245 at the 2010 census, ranking it as the state's 18th largest city, behind Bella Vista. It is part of the Memphis metropolitan area, and is located directly across the Mississippi River from Memphis.
Native Americans lived in the Mississippi River Valley for at least 10,000 years, although much of the evidence of their presence has been buried or destroyed. The Indians of the Mississippian Period were the last native inhabitants of the West Memphis area. Mound City Road, located within the eastern portion of the West Memphis city limits, has a marker indicating that the villages of Aquixo (Aquijo) or Pacaha were in the area. Several mounds are still visible.
Explorers from both Spain and France visited the area near West Memphis. Among those explorers were Hernando de Soto and his men from Spain and Father Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet from France. By the time French hunters and explorers entered the region, the Mississippian towns and other settlements had been abandoned. The original site of West Memphis came from Spanish land grants issued during the 1790s. Grants were given to Benjamin Fooy, John Henry Fooy, and Isaac Fooy in the Hopefield (Crittenden County) area and to William McKenney in the Bridgeport-West Memphis area.
Choose the Right CNA Training Classes near West Memphis AR
Choosing the best certified nursing assistant school is perhaps the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are many variables that you must take into account when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is essential that you choose a CNA college and program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a certified nursing assistant in West Memphis AR.
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