Online Classes for Certified Nurse's Aides
If you're a certified nurse's aide, you can find online, non-credit lessons that can help you brush up on skills necessary for your work, like dealing with difficult patients, using equipment and securing employment. Learn about available online resources and more about the CNA career, as well as why you won't be able to become one through an online program. Schools offering Nursing degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
Why Can't I Become a Certified Nurse's Aide via Online Learning?
Certified nurse's aides (CNAs), also called nursing assistants, receive training in handling medical devices, moving patients and dealing with bodily functions. These skills cannot be taught online, and as a CNA trainee, you'll spend a lot of time in classrooms, labs and hospitals. While each state sets its own guidelines for CNA certification, accredited programs all require lab time, hospital practicums and skills practices.
Hands-on experiences during CNA training include taking vital signs, giving baths, working around intravenous (IV) equipment, making beds and using safety restraints. Communication and sensitivity training are other important aspects of a CNA's education.
What Online Resources Are Available?
While fully online CNA training programs aren't offered, you may be able to find courses conducted partially online. Additionally, you can find lessons, reading materials, videos and other informational tools online. Through these, you'll learn or refresh yourself with nursing assistant tasks, such as making beds, communicating with patients and taking temperatures. These are offered by schools, professional organizations and other websites.
You may be able to access distance learning classes offered by professional organizations, like the National Association of Health Care Assistants. These courses usually focus on a specialty service, such as working with geriatric patients, and they require you to complete your studies and pass an exam within a year. Only CNAs with current certification can take the course. Generally, online nursing aide classes do not qualify you to become a CNA.
Is a CNA Job Right for Me?
If you like to work with people and have a nurturing nature, you might enjoy working as a certified nurse's assistant. While additional training is required to move up in the nursing field, says the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), working as a CNA can give you an idea of whether you'd enjoy being a nurse (www.bls.gov). You'll learn how to be comfortable working with hospital patients that have varying degrees of illness and different needs. CNAs work in hospitals, long-term care facilities and nursing homes.
While each state may have its own requirements, you'll generally need to complete at least 75 hours of approved training and pass an exam, says the BLS. Once you've fulfilled your state's requirements, you'll be a registered certified nurse's assistant and eligible for work in the field.
The BLS reported that CNA jobs will experience higher job growth than most other careers from 2008-2018. They also said that because the job is physically demanding and comparatively low-paying, there should be high turnover. The middle half of nurse's aides made a median of $9.85-$13.94 an hour in 2009, the BLS reported.
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