If you’re fulfilled by helping others, especially elderly or sick people, you should consider working in the health care field as CNA. CNA stands for Certified Nursing Assistant. To get certified you can take CNA online classes, attending a CNA course online.
CNA classes online are suitable for a large number of people. If you have a job, even a full time one, you can take the lessons online whenever you want, anytime, any day of the week, as you don’t have to physically attend a class. If you have a busy lifestyle you can schedule the classes at the most convenient time for you.
The only previous requirement needed to start a CNA course online is a computer and a steady and reliable Internet connection. Provided that, you can follow the course at your own pace with your own schedule, being the information available 24 hours a day.
Also if you are unemployed or work as a freelance, and have a lot of time to study, CNA programs online can be convenient for you. Since the whole course is online you can access it at any time and finish the course in a shorter time. You won’t be constrained by the timetable of the classes. This is a great advantage for people willing to have their certification as soon as possible.
Some schools for future CNAs have agreements with governmental and health care facilities in need of nursing assistants. In some cases you can have free CNA classes if you work in these centers as a volunteer. Furthermore the experience acquired can be an advantage over other inexperienced CNAs.
CNA courses online are divided in two parts: Theory and practice. You can complete the theoretical part online, at the comfort of your home in 8-12 weeks, depending on how much time you can spend on the lessons, while the practical part must be done in a hospital, hospice, physio center or other health care facilities.
The salary of a CNA is also an interesting aspect to be considered. It’s a good amount for a first-time job and can increase depending on your commitment and performance. The hourly wage starts at $8 to $14.
There are some concerns regarding attending CNA classes online over taking an on-campus course and sometimes people can’t take a decision. First of all, before taking that decision, let’s see the duties of a CNA.
The job of a CNA is helping LPNs (Licensed Practical Nurses) and RNs (Registered Nurses) in assisting the patients. CNAs work very closely with them, while LPN and RN don’t. The tasks of a CNA include feeding and bathing the patient, make up the room and bed, administer medications, record vital signs and many more. These tasks entail a great responsibility, and previous training and education are a must for any individual willing to become a CNA.
Now that you know which are the tasks, duties and responsibilities of a CNA, to help further in the decision let’s see the advantages and disadvantages of on-campus CNA courses and CNA classes online.
On-campus CNA courses
This is the conventional choice. CNA course can be attended in community colleges or vocational schools. If you have enough time to attend the classes you will benefit close interaction with your professors. You can ask them questions, ask to clarify some points and have an answer without having to wait. Also, you will meet other students with the same interests as yours, interact with them as well and help each other.
As for the disadvantage, in some colleges the classes are overcrowded, which result in less attention for each student. Transportation also can be a problem. Traffic jam and time to go and come back from the school is also a point to consider as if you leave far from the campus you will waste a considerable amount of time. Furthermore lessons timetables are very strict and lack flexibility, limiting the freedom of the students.
CNA classes online
The main advantage of online classes is the possibility to study whenever and wherever you want. You can study at the comforts of your home, or while on trip, at day or night. You can fit perfectly your lessons in your busy lifestyle or full time job. All the material is available online, you can study at your pace, slower or faster than a on-campus course and watch the lessons again and again.
The main disadvantage is the lack of interaction. You can’t ask questions to your professors and, even if live chats and student forums are available, the relationship with other students is not the same.
The Concerns About CNA Classes Online
However, due to the fact that CNA classes online are cheaper, sometimes even free, and conveniently accessible, many future CNAs have concerns about whether the education and training they may acquire online will be the same of a college program.
Actually the main concern, that is how is it possible to train the practical part in an online course, is in some cases understandable. Some schools provide only theoretical lessons and the skills they teach are either in oral or written form. Students don’t have the chance to train “hands-on” with the patients. However some colleges collaborate with hospices, hospitals, rehab centers and so on to help the student touching with hands the real job. They will have to perform duties supervised by a Registered Nurse and work a number of hours to be able to take the certification exam.
Also pay attention to the CNA training programs shorter than 8 weeks. The quality of these courses can’t be as good as a on-campus course, where skills and duties are taught much more deeply with the related advantages in terms of retention and comprehension.
CNA Classes Online State Rules and Schools Accreditations
According to the State, CNA programs requirements and rules vary. In California, for example, the theoretical part of CNA courses online will only give you credits. It is not possible to study the Excelsior program to become a registered Nurse online.
Some schools are not accredited to teach CNA classes online. The accreditation must be granted by the State the school is in. Attending a course in a school not accredited can only be a source of problems when it comes to certificate. The entity that grants the accreditation is the NLNAC (National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission). Get in contact with the NLNAC if you have doubts about the accreditation of a school.
As you can see there are some points that can raise concerns about CNA online programs. However certificate as a nursing assistant studying on line is very much possible, as many CNAs can tell. Make sure to enroll in an accredited school, with good reputation that offers quality training online and study hard. That’s all you need to become a certified nursing assistant.