If you would like to make nursing your career, getting certified as a nursing assistant could be your first step into the industry. As a nursing assistant, you will work directly with patients in a professional manner. You will take vitals, answer questions, and ensure that doctor’s orders are carried out and patients are comfortable and safe. You will be eligible to work in a variety of medical settings, including in nursing homes, facilities for patients with disabilities, and hospitals.
Many nurses are satisfied with their careers as nursing assistants, but many others use these jobs as a stepping stone. They will use their CNA certification to start working in the field, and then they will continue their education to become higher-paid nurses with even more employment opportunities.
Before you can think about pushing off to the next stepping stone, you have to figure out how to get certified as a nursing assistant. You will have to pass a state test that proves you have the book knowledge and skills needed to safely and efficiently work as a nursing assistant, and that means going through a training program. Your training program will give you all of the information needed to pass the state test and earn your certification.
Some assistant nurses get their start through employer-sponsored training. This means they are hired by a specific company willing to train them before they are put to work. Oftentimes these positions are offered under other titles, and you are not required to get certified through the state before you start working.
The problem with this is you are bound to that employer, and you may not be state certified in the end. You may still be on your own when it comes to getting the certification that will qualify you for higher-paying jobs with better benefits in other companies.
Online and Local Training
If you do not want to be bound to one employer and want to make sure you are prepared to pass the state test for certification, you should seek training through a local community college, local organization, or an online course. These courses are not tied to any specific employer and will give you all of the information and skills needed to pass your state’s test and become certified.
The length of these courses varies, but the faster courses will require far more hours of studying and/or in the classroom. You have to choose a program that will work with your schedule and which will not interfere with other obligations in your life.
Many future nurses get their start with online courses since they do not require hours spent away from home in a classroom. The majority of the work is presented through the Internet and can be accessed whenever it best fits your schedule. You just have to make sure that the course you choose will qualify you to pass your state test for CNA certification.
Know Your Requirements
If you are interested in becoming a certified nursing assistant, you have to start by looking up the requirements dictated by your state. Your certification will be through one state, and you will have to retake the test or transfer your certification if you move to a new state. Every state sets its guidelines regarding certification.
Ask a lot of questions before deciding to go through one particular training course. Make sure you will learn everything needed to pass your test and start your career. Make sure others have found success with the program as well. What others have experienced tells you what you are likely to experience during and after your training.