The career path of a CNA is not very complicated but it does require hard work and commitment, as any field of work does. One thing that you need to be a CNA is a willingness to help people. Taking care of patients is not easy. It requires patience and kindness. So pursue this path if you think you are willing and capable of helping. It can be a very rewarding experience for people.
In order to pursue the career path of becoming a CNA you have to follow several steps.
CNA Education Programs
Your training is the first the basic step. CNA training programs vary by state so before your enroll yourself in a program you should check the rules of your state. The CNA training also differs by the institution. For example American Red Cross has its own training program and regulations. Then there are the local health care providers, technical schools, community colleges and even online training programs such as Think CNA Online. As we mentioned, each institution has its own program which can last anywhere from four to sixteen weeks.
State CNA Certification Exams
CNA training does not qualify you to become a CNA; you will still have pass exams set by your state in order to become fully certified. Most CNA classes online should cover your local state’s requirements as part of the preparation for the CNA certification exam.
The exam will include theory, clinical ad practical components. While you are waiting to take your exam, you may be able to work for a few months but again that depends on the regulations of your state. Each state also has its own extra certification requirements so look those up as well to avoid any surprises later.
After you receive you certification, there are two things that you can do. Either you can go on and get a CNA job at a health care facility. Or you can go back to school for some more education in your field. The second option is mandatory in some states. They require you to complete a set number of credits each year in order to attain and maintain your certification.
Further CNA Career Options
Once your training is fully complete and you have some experience, you will be able to decide better what you want to do. You can go on to become a CNA for a long term. It offers great job security and you build lasting relations with your patients in health care facilities, especially in nursing homes.
If you don’t want the relaxed pace of a nursing home, you can apply to a hospital. You will not have much time with your patients there as they are discharged after a few days. But the environment of a hospital is faster paced so you can go for that as well.
Other than that, you get even higher education and go for the career path of a Registered Nurse (RN). With their experience, it is a logical choice for many CNA to pursue.