A Certified Nursing Aide (CNA) is a vital member of the healthcare team. Day-in and day-out, CNAs are needed to ensure that patients are receiving comfortable, quality care.
We’ve already talked about the many reasons one should become a CNA, but how do you do it? What requirements do you need to fulfill, and what steps do you need to take, to start working as a Certified Nursing Aide? Below, Stone Academy shows you how to become a CNA in Connecticut in just 3 steps.
1. Complete a State-Approved CNA Program.
Across the United States, Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) are required to complete a state-approved education program in order to qualify for a career. Typically, these CNA programs are offered in post-secondary institutions, at the diploma or certificate level. Rest assured that this doesn’t mean years of nursing school. Becoming a CNA is actually one of the fastest tracks into the healthcare field. Connecticut-approved CNA programs are required to be at least 100 hours’ long.
Post-secondary CNA training programs are usually coordinated by Registered Nurses who have experience in long-term care. From them, you will learn the basic principles of nursing, as well as the clinical skills needed to thrive in a practical healthcare setting. At Stone Academy, for example, we ensure that each CNA student walks away having mastered the 25, fundamental nursing aide skills, in addition to any core, clinical competencies that can be carried out by nursing assistants.
If you are looking to become a CNA in the state of Connecticut, Stone Academy is a great place to start your career path. Our 125-hour nursing assistant program involves both on- and off-site clinical training, combined with classroom learning. It is our goal to prepare you for your CNA certification, as well as for a variety of career opportunities in the field. Many of our students go onto work in hospitals, nursing homes, long-term care facilities, home health, sub-acute rehabilitation, and hospice after graduation.
2. Gain the Skills Needed to Succeed.
To become a CNA today, you need more than classroom training under your belt. You must know how to put your learning to practice, in a real-life healthcare setting. You must know how to interact and communicate with patients, both appropriately and compassionately. You must understand (and know how to navigate) a fast-pace care facility.
That is exactly what your clinical training is for. Clinical rotations are required by the State of Connecticut prior to taking the CNA certification exam – and are therefore an important part of the curriculum at Stone Academy. All of our students are given the opportunity to practice their learned clinical skills in an active medical facility. In fact, Stone Academy has close relationships with local healthcare employers throughout the state. We believe by working beside active nurses and Certified Nursing Assistants, CNA students will obtain the hands-on training and experiences needed to shape their future careers. In the right CNA program, you will learn practical, clinical skills such as:
- Indirect patient care, including infection prevention and control
- Range of motion exercises to help patients recover
- How to take patient vital signs
- How to properly position patients (you’ll understand the difference between supine and prone positioning!)
- Perineal care and catheter care
You’ll also gain many interpersonal qualities in training to become a Certified Nursing Aide:
- How to communicate effectively with patients, nurses, and other healthcare workers
- Compassion and empathy, as you will care for the sick, the injured, and the elderly
- Patience, as the work of a CNA (and direct involvement with patients), can be stressful at times
- Physical stamina, as you will be spending long hours on your feet performing physical tasks
3. Earn Certification in Connecticut
After completing a Connecticut-approved CNA program, and after gaining the competencies needed for a CNA career, nursing assistants must take the Connecticut Nurse’s Aide Certification Exam. Passing this exam will officially earn you the title as a Certified Nurse Aide. CNAs who pass this exam will also be put on a state registry – which, if you would like, makes you eligible to work in a nursing home.
Some states, like Connecticut, offer additional credentials for inspired CNAs. For example, Stone Academy students have the option to pursue our Patient Care Specialist Program, which incorporates CNA classes but also prepares students to earn their Home Health Aide Certificate after graduation (in addition the Connecticut CNA certification exam). These credentials, along with the advanced PCS training, set our students apart from others when applying for jobs as a new Certified Nursing Aide.
Interested in starting your CNA career at Stone Academy? Call (800) 585-1315 or Click Here to request more information! If you are looking to take a step even further into the nursing field, you can also read about our other Nursing Programs online.