If you are hoping to become a CNA, a certified nursing assistant, you might be considering a CNA certification online. In some instances this might be quite acceptable, but if you are hoping to land a well paying job at a large medical facility with perhaps some room for advancement, you might want to research all your options before making a decision.
A CNA replaces the old fashioned Nurses Aids from years ago. Nurses Aids took care of tasks that nurses didn’t have time for and sometimes just didn’t want to do. Changing beds and handing out bedpans were typical chores that were handed off the aids. It didn’t take a lot of training, and most of the training was done on the job once you were hired.
However, the industry changed dramatically in the 1980s as standards were changed, laws enacted, and patients’ privacy issues were taken seriously. Nurses aids were phased out and the industry standard for that position became the CNA. And along with the new title came new educational programs and demands for excellence.
Any type of medical training demands two forms of study: classroom and hands on. You can’t learn everything from a book, and when it comes to the daily tasks and chores of a CNA, most of the job entails tasks that need to be practiced over and over before being proficient in an actual job. This facet of the learning process is missing when it comes to any type of online training.
There are some programs available that give you a mixture of classroom and online learning. Check out courses that include webinars and white boards where you can interact with your teachers and even other students. Of course, the practical teachings you learn in this manner are still very restricted. You might be able to practice changing a bandage, but when it comes to learning how to hook up an IV bag or maneuver a hospital bed with a post op patient, it’s impossible.
All the coursework in the world can’t replace what you will be lacking in practical experience. If you are hoping to land a good job in a large hospital or rehab facility, you might be out of luck when it comes to job interviews. These facilities need people who have been fully trained in every area, and if you don’t have what they are looking for, you’ll be out of luck.
Just remember – you can pass your program with an A and you can ace your state exam, but if you haven’t mastered all the hands on tasks you’ll be responsible for mastering your first week on the job, you might be forced into taking extra courses to give you the practice you didn’t get the first time around.
If you want to work in a big hospital, find out what schools they are affiliated with. Graduates of these programs are sought after in the industry and if you do well, you’ll have your pick after graduation.