How to Choose a CNA Program near Dolton Illinois
So you have decided to become a CNA and enroll in certified nursing assistant training near Dolton IL. Once you have attained your certification, you will be starting a gratifying career in one of the fastest increasing positions in health care within the United States. Even though it may well seem like a daunting undertaking, it’s imperative that you pick the right CNA program to acquire the appropriate training and education. A number of potential students start with the two most fundamental 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 alternative later. But performing your due diligence before choosing a CNA program consists of much more than comparing the price or location. Such qualifiers as accreditation and the reputation of the school must similarly be taken into consideration. We will be addressing those issues as well as various other questions that you need to be asking before you enroll in a CNA school. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about what a nursing assistant does and the type of instruction and credentials that are offered.
The Duties of a Nursing Assistant in Dolton IL
Certified Nursing Assistants carry out many jobs in the Dolton IL hospitals, clinics and other medical organizations where they work. As indicated by their title, CNAs are not licensed by the state but instead are certified. Since they are not licensed, they function under the guidance and supervision of either a licensed LPN or RN. And as nursing assistants, their prime job duty is to assist the licensed nurses that they work under. Their duties are numerous and varied, and in a hospital environment might include:
- Administering basic services to patients
- Taking patient’s vital signs
- Keeping a record of patient’s health status
- Cleaning and dressing patients
- Serving and assisting patients with meals
- Moving patients to other areas
CNAs can also work in Dolton IL nursing homes or long term care facilities. In those settings, nursing assistants are more engaged in supporting patients with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ADLs are defined as routine activities that the majority of people carry out daily without aid, such as eating, dressing, or using the washroom. Nursing assistants commonly develop more of a bond with these patients since they typically remain in the facilities for extended periods of time. Frequently, they may end up being the conduit between the patient and the balance of the medical staff because of their familiarity with their charges. Consequently, the CNA’s knowledge can be an useful resource for preparing the appropriate care and treatment of long term care patients.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants in Dolton IL do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to 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 must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make certain that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also 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 sure that the education is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.
Online CNA Schools
Enrolling in CNA classes online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain training and acquire a nursing credential. 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 conducted in a local Dolton IL healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, some online programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited. So if your work and family obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online CNA school will make it easier to fit an education into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask CNA Nursing Courses
Once you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous CNA schools and colleges within Illinois and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school relative to Dolton IL along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
Is the CNA program accredited? It’s important that the Dolton IL 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 Dolton IL, make sure that it complies with the certification requirements for Illinois 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 Dolton IL 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. Illinois 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 Dolton IL 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 Dolton IL 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 Dolton IL 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 Dolton IL 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 Dolton IL, 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 Dolton IL?
Dolton (pronounced "DAWL-ton") is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 23,153 at the 2010 census. Dolton is located just west of the expressway Interstate 94 and immediately south of the city limits of Chicago. Its most common ZIP code is 60419.
According to the 2010 census, Dolton has a total area of 4.68 square miles (12.12 km2), of which 4.56 square miles (11.81 km2) (or 97.44%) is land and 0.12 square miles (0.31 km2) (or 2.56%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 25,614 people, 8,512 households, and 6,494 families residing in the village. The population density was 5,627.6 people per square mile (2,173.5/km²). There were 8,944 housing units at an average density of 1,965.1 per square mile (759.0/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 82.4% African American, 14.3% White, 0.6% Asian, 0.2% Native American, 1.4% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.1% of the population.
Choose the Right CNA Program near Dolton IL
Enrolling in the ideal certified nursing assistant school is perhaps the most critical first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of factors that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have highlighted in this post, it is essential that you select a CNA school and program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a CNA in Dolton IL.
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