Becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant, or CNA, is a great way for people to get started with a nursing career. The CNA position is essentially an entry level one. As such, it provides an excellent introduction to the nursing field. Although many people choose to stay a CNA once they have acquired the necessary knowledge and skills, others go on to become registered nurses or licensed practical nurses. Demand for qualified CNAs is on the rise, especially as the general population ages and requires increased medical care.
To become a CNA in California, individuals must be at least 16 years old. They also must submit to a background check that will look at their criminal history. Any history, with the exception of minor traffic violations, is subject to review by the Department of Health Services. Additionally, CNA candidates must pass a physical exam. This exam is administered to ensure that the CNA will not present a health hazard to their patients and coworkers.
Perhaps the most important requirement for becoming a CNA in California is the training. A minimum of 150 hours of training, consisting of classroom work and skills practice, is required to sit for the licensing examination. During training, students learn to take and record vital signs and assist with the daily care of acutely ill patients.
Upon successful completion of the training, individuals will be tested on their CNA knowledge and skills by the state. Once the exam is passed, the CNA’s name is entered into the DHS Nurse Aide Registry. CNAs maintain this certification by taking continuing education courses throughout their career.
In Anaheim, students may choose from one of three government approved CNA training programs. The Coast Health Career College offers a CNA training program lasting seven weeks that adequately prepares students to sit for the state exam. Courses at Coast Health prepare students to effectively interact with patients and to provide thorough care. This institution strives to ready its students to meet the challenges of being a CNA in a short time period, meaning students can start working and earning quickly.
The North Orange County Regional Occupation Program is another good choice for Anaheim residents. The school is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, and regularly provides CNA training programs for high school students and adults. This program is highly controlled to ensure a quality educational experience that gives CNA students a superior start for their career.
Summit Career College in Anaheim offers state of the art facilities and plenty of one-on-one instruction. This particular school has been in operation since 1991, and it is a recognized leader in CNA training facilities in the state. Summit provides one of the largest CNA training programs in California. Its instructors are highly experienced and knowledgeable, starting students off with a solid education that adequately prepares them to meet the challenges of working as a CNA.
The medical staff at various health care facilities depends upon CNAs to provide vital assistance with every day patient care. CNAs enjoy plenty of one-on-one contact with patients, allowing them to develop close relationships. The work of the CNA is typically challenging, but the opportunity to help others when they are most in need is a singularly rewarding experience and the main reason people select this career path.
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