Texas CNA Skills (Part Thirteen): Resources to Help Prepare for the CNA State Test

smiling woman holding red cutout heart
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

The National Nurse Aide Assessment Program (NNAAP), also known as the CNA state test, must be passed by any nurse aide who wants to attain state certification as a CNA. In addition, nurse aides who plan to pass the CNA state test on the very first attempt would be wise to utilize all of the resources they can possibly get their hands on. It also helps that many of the existing resources are completely free!

Fortunately, there are numerous resources out there to help students conquer the state test successfully. Preparation is the key, so the following resources will prove useful only if the student uses them and does not wait until the last minute to cram them in and study during the final hour. In fact, studying for the CNA state test should really be an ongoing process in which small amounts of material are covered each day.

Even though a mountain of testing information exists throughout the deepest crevices of the world wide web, a few of the resources might be terribly outdated or not all that informative. Therefore, a list of more relevant resources have been compiled and listed below to help nurse aide students prepare for the CNA state test. Take a deep breath, relax, prepare, and enjoy your future nursing assistant career!

  • Other Schools’ CNA Program Websites: Many CNA programs publish their lecture notes, study guides, PowerPoint presentations, online lessons and other learning materials for free. Click here to get to a series of excellent PowerPoint presentations on CNA lessons from the Kings County Office of Education.
  • Texas Curriculum for Nurse Aides in Long Term Care Facilities: This is the official nurse aide curriculum that has been approved for use by the state of Texas. In fact, the theory and skills contained within this curricula are used to formulate the questions and skills scenarios on the Texas CNA state test. Click here to get to the Texas curriculum.
  • Illinois State Nursing Exam Practice Test: This is a sample CNA state test that is being offered completely online through the Southern Illinois University website. This exam enables the user to select the number of questions; moreover, it automatically checks the submitted answers for correctness. Unlike the real CNA state test, no time limit have been imposed on this practice test.
  • Study Guide Books: There happens to be a myriad of CNA study guides for sale on websites such as Amazon, Ebay and Barnes & Noble that are designed to help test takers prepare for the written portion of the CNA state test. Purchasing one of these study guides might be a wise investment.
  • National Nurse Aide Assessment Program (NNAAP) Practice Exam: This practice test contains a number of questions that are extremely similar to ones that will be seen on the written section of the CNA state test. Therefore, it would be a good idea to take this practice exam, review the answers, and study the rationales for all the answers. Click here to get to the NNAAP Practice Exam.
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS): The BLS website, which happens to be updated and maintained by the United States Department of Labor on a regular basis, contains the most up-to-date statistics on the nursing assistant role. The BLS site has info such as routine nurse aide duties, work environment, average pay rates, and projected job outlook. Click here to get to the BLS nursing assistant web page.
  • Your CNA School: Do not forget to utilize the CNA school that you attended because the instructors can serve as knowledgeable resources. A reputable CNA program will be staffed with instructors who want students to succeed, so it is in the best interests of the school’s staff to assist graduates in preparing for the state test.
Advertisements

Scholarships to Attend CNA School: the Health Occupations Scholarship Award

empty theater seats
Photo by Jaime Fernández on Pexels.com

The following announcement is intended for any persons in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex area of Texas who are seeking financial help in the form of a partial tuition scholarship to attend a certified nursing assistant (CNA) training program. The Health Occupations Scholarship Award is definitely worth exploring further.

Provided by Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School, this scholarship fund has been made available to prospective students who are pursuing occupational healthcare training at this Dallas/Fort Worth area school. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age and should have a desire to pursue a career in the healthcare field. Award winners receive partial-tuition scholarships including books, supplies and fees.

The scholarship awards are specifically for students who plan to enroll in nurse aide or other healthcare occupational training classes at Legacy Healthcare Careers. Prospective students may be enrolled in courses on a full time or part time basis. Students should also display dedication to the healthcare field and have a solid work ethic. Students must be or plan to be attending school at Legacy Healthcare Careers.

Submitting an application for scholarship award money is a fairly straightforward process. To apply, visit the school’s website (www.LegacyHealthcareCareers.com) and scroll down to submit a scholarship application. In addition, the scholarship application can be accessed directly by clicking or copying and pasting the following link into a web browser: http://www.123formbuilder.com/form-4595340/scholarship-application

The award amounts are $250, $100 and $50. Three scholarship awards will be granted every month. During the application process, students will be required to write a short one-paragraph essay that contains a detailed explanation on their reasons for entering the healthcare field. Prospective students who apply for a scholarship must also follow up by meeting with the school’s director for a tour of the school.

Scholarship winners will be selected on the basis and quality of the essay submissions. Winners will be notified via phone. This scholarship is only available to prospective students who enroll in one of Legacy Healthcare Careers’ health occupational training programs. Call (682)313-6404 for questions or any additional information.

Are you considering a career in the healthcare industry? Do you have the follow-through and motivation to do it? A career as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) is an amazing point of entry into the healthcare sector. A healthcare career as a CNA provides the ultimate foundation to almost any individual’s future in the health sciences. 

Legacy Healthcare Careers delivers several high quality CNA programs. In addition, the school intends to offer state-approved medication aide training in the spring of 2019 at our Fort Worth Mid-Cities area campus. Call (682)626-5266 or the 24-hour hotline at (682)313-6404 for additional information. This is a golden opportunity. Do not pass it up.

Healthcare Career Spotlight: the Certified Medication Aide

pink round medication pill
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Certified medication aides, also known in some states in the U.S. as assistive medication administration personnel or medication technicians, have a clearly defined role in the allied healthcare field that is definitely worth exploring further. The overriding goal of this piece is to discuss the medication aide, including the day to day duties and responsibilities associated with this role.

Medication aides are helpful members of the allied healthcare team who assist licensed nurses in the realm of medication therapy. The primary function of the medication aide is safe administration of non-injectable over-the-counter and prescription drugs to clients, patients and residents. Medication aides work at the bedside to distribute medications to a large number of clients in a timely manner.

Medication aides are utilized extensively in certain settings, but never found in other types of workplaces. Post-acute healthcare settings such as long term care facilities, personal care group homes, correctional facilities, schools and assisted living facilities utilize medication aides regularly depending on the state. Meanwhile, medication aides are not utilized in the acute care hospital setting.

Most, but not all, states in the U.S. allow medication aides to work. In the states that do allow the use of medication aides, they are permitted to administer oral, topical, transdermal, eye and ear medicines to clients under the supervision of a licensed nurse. In addition, medication aides communicate with clients, report changes in patients’ conditions, obtain vital signs, and document their findings.

Because of pre-existing regulations in most states, the vast majority of medication aides have prior patient care work experience as certified nursing assistants (CNAs) or unlicensed assistive direct care workers. To be admitted into most medication aide training programs, students must be 18 years of age or older with a high school diploma or G.E.D. and submit evidence of work experience as a CNA or direct care worker.

The educational requirements to become a medication aide differ in each state. For instance, the requirements to become a medication aide in Texas entail 140 hours of training. The 140-hour medication aide training programs in Texas are comprised of 100 hours of classroom (didactic) teaching, 30 hours of hands-on return skill demonstrations and 10 hours of clinical externship practicum.

The medication aide training classes consist of a targeted review of a number of relevant topics such as medical terminology, human body systems, effects of medication on each body system, infection control, and drug medication classifications. The goal of the medication aide program curriculum is to bestow pertinent knowledge upon students so they will be able to administer medications safely and prudently.

Individuals who graduate from medication aide programs must also pass a written medication aide examination in the state where they plan to secure employment. The medication aide state test usually contains 100 multiple choice questions on medication therapies. Students who pass the written medication aide state test receive a practice permit or state certification as a certified medication aide.

The state medication aide certification and/or practice permit allows the certified individual to work in a wide variety of healthcare settings for fairly competitive pay. In addition, the working conditions of medication aides are generally not as demanding on the body as those experienced by nursing assistants and direct care workers. For many people, a career as a medication aide is a step up.

How does a career in the healthcare industry sound? A career as a medication aide is an awesome entry point into the healthcare field. Working in the allied healthcare field as a medication aide can serve as a wondrously great foundation to any person’s occupational future. 

Legacy Healthcare Careers will soon be offering a medication aide program in the spring of 2019 at our Fort Worth area campus. Place that phone call to (682)626-5266 or the 24-hour hotline at (682)313-6404 to get more information. This is an opportunity that should not be passed up.

Spotlight on an Obscure Healthcare Career: the Dental Nurse

business care clean clinic
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The special role of the dental nurse remains obscure in many intriguing ways. The overarching goal of this piece is to shed some light on the role and professional responsibilities of dental nurses, as well as the training and registration requirements that they must adhere to.

Dental nurses are uniquely vital team members of the healthcare career ladder who assist in all types of dentistry treatments and work in all sorts of dental specialties. The primary function of the dental nurse is to provide ancillary support to dentists as they deliver care to patients. Dental nurses work collaboratively at the chairside with dentists during the completion of oral surgeries and other procedures and treatments.

Very few licensed dental nurses are employed in the United States; thus, their role remains very shrouded in mystery to most folks who dwell in the US. In fact, many people in the US have never even heard of a dental nurse. In addition, the majority of dentists in the US prefer to use dental assistants and dental hygienists as a way to contain labor costs. After all, a dental assistant is usually less costly to hire than a nurse.

Nonetheless, dental nurses are heavily utilized in a number of other countries, especially the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Malaysia. Dental nurses are also utilized on a much smaller scale in several provinces of Canada, especially Ontario.

A dental nurse works at the chairside next to dentists as they provide ongoing care during patients’ visits. Some of the tasks that dental nurses may do include the following: obtaining health histories, taking and recording vital signs, performing assessments, applying numbing agents to patients’ gums prior to invasive treatments, administering topical fluoride, and providing postoperative education after oral surgical procedures.

Dental nurses might also be responsible for routine duties such as preparing materials, sterilizing equipment with autoclaves, reordering supplies, taking x-rays, obtaining impressions, and making sure the appropriate instruments are available to the dentist during treatments. Also, dental nurses might be responsible for clerical tasks such as answering telephone calls, scheduling appointments, and processing payments.

The minuscule number of dental offices that utilize licensed dental nurses in the US are ones that perform a large number of oral surgeries. These surgical procedures require specialized assessment and observation of sedated patients after administration of local or general anesthesia, so these dental practices may hire and use licensed practical nurses (LPNs) or registered nurses (RNs) with post anesthesia care unit experience.

In other countries, most dental nurses secure employment in a variety of workplaces that include general dentistry clinics, oral & maxillofacial surgery practices or orthodontic offices. Additionally, other dental nurses can be found working for the military, dental hospitals, office management, nonprofit agencies or other public organizations.

In the UK, dental nurses must be registered. Since 2008, it has been mandatory that all dental nurses be registered with the General Dental Council (GDC). In addition, it is unlawful to use the title of ‘dental nurse’ without the appropriate registration. To become a dental nurse in the UK, a prospective student can enroll in a post-secondary program at a dental hospital or school of dental nursing to obtain practical training.

Would you like to climb aboard the nursing career ladder? Well, a career as a nursing assistant is a wonderful foundation to any person’s potential future in the nursing profession. Do you have the motivation to follow through and make a career change? Do you have what it takes to rise to the challenge?

The 7-day CNA program at Legacy Healthcare Careers delivers fast-track, state-approved vocational training to become a nursing assistant in a matter of days. Place a telephone call to (682)626-5266 or the 24-hour enrollment hotline at (682)313-6404 to enroll at Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School today! Classes are starting soon. Do not miss out on this opportunity.

Completely Online CNA Programs: A Word to the Wise

screenshot 2019-01-29 at 9.49.35 am

Let’s address this complicated issue head-on: modern day life is ridiculously busy! Most busy adults are juggling employment, family time, a social life and other aspects of their lives to strike some sort of balance. These time-consuming facets of life do not leave all that much time to attend school full-time, especially in a classroom setting.

After all, who has time to sit in a classroom for several hours per day? After working hard for eight to twelve hours all day long, does any sane person really want to spend the rest of the evening or all weekend long in a classroom setting? Most people would rather be at home where they can wind down, chill out, relax, eat a home-cooked meal or spend a few precious hours with the ones they love the most.

However, many people are unsatisfied with their current jobs. Some people may even hate their jobs with a passion! Therefore, the thought of returning to school to prepare for a career change has often crossed their minds. While these folks may mentally dance with the idea of going back to school, the reality of it often involves giving up multiple evenings or weekends to spend time in a classroom. Again, who really has time for that?

Ah, but there appears to be a solution that can be integrated into peoples’ busy lifestyles: online classes! In addition, many people want to enter the nursing profession due to the potential of steady pay and abundant job opportunities, so they search the internet for online healthcare career programs that can be completed in the comfort of one’s home.

Here is a word to the wise. Regardless of any fancy advertisements you may have seen, you cannot become a nurse completely online. You cannot become a CNA completely online. In fact, no state board of nursing in existence will allow students to become nurses totally online for one very simple reason: no one can truly learn to provide hands-on nursing care to patients without actually touching any patients.

The large number of online nursing degree programs that are advertised on the internet have been designed for people who are already licensed nurses (LPN or RN). These online nursing programs allow licensed nurses to pursue higher education and earn additional nursing degrees from a college or university while keeping their full time jobs.

For instance, an RN with an associates degree can complete an online bachelor of science degree in nursing (BSN). However, she first had to complete her associates of science degree in nursing (ASN) face to face in a class setting before qualifying for admission to the online BSN program. All state boards of nursing require nursing students to amass a certain number of classroom and clinical practicum hours in order to graduate.

Think about it. Would you want a nurse with no patient care experience whatsoever to take care of you or your loved ones? A nurse whose only schooling was online classes never received hands-on training in patient care. All nurses must complete a clinical practicum externship that entails spending many hours in hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare settings where they learn to provide hands-on care to real patients.

It is a similar situation with nursing assistant training. For instance, the state of Texas requires prospective nurse aides to complete a 100-hour CNA program that is comprised of 60 class and return demonstration lab hours as well as 40 clinical externship hours. This clinical externship occurs in a healthcare facility where students deliver hands-on care to patients. This is how nurse aide students learn to become CNAs.

In a nutshell, completely online CNA programs do not exist, at least in the state of Texas where 100 hours of face to face instruction are required. If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. The goal of this piece is to help readers and prevent them from being scammed by unscrupulous online businesses that claim to offer online CNA school. If this posting helps just one student out there, it will have been worth it to us.

Do you have the motivation to change your career? The 7-day CNA program at Legacy Healthcare Careers offers state-approved career training to become a nursing assistant in approximately one week. Call (682)626-5266 to enroll at Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School now! Classes start soon.

Healthcare Career Spotlight: the Medical Office Assistant

working woman technology computer
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

A medical office assistant, also known as an administrative medical assistant or front office medical assistant, is a multifaceted allied healthcare professional whose primary function is to ensure that the front office area of physicians’ offices, clinics, medical groups and hospital units runs smoothly. A competent medical office assistant puts an array of soft interpersonal skills and hard procedural skills to use every single workday to get the job done.

Medical office assistants are vital members of the healthcare team because without their varied skill set, many healthcare settings would have difficulty managing day to day operations. In general, the medical office assistant tends to be the very first individual with whom patients, clients vendors and visitors come into contact at most physicians’ offices and clinic settings. Thus, these multi-skilled healthcare workers serve as the front line backbones of many workplace settings.

The allied health occupation of front office medical assisting has expanded greatly over the past few decades. Therefore, the role of the typical medical office assistant has also expanded to keep up with modern times.  Medical office assistants complete tasks such as scheduling patients’ appointments, greeting and checking patients and visitors in, coordinating visits with guests such as pharmaceutical representatives, and contacting vendors to reorder supplies.

Medical office assistants may also be responsible for clerical duties such as computer data entry, conducting phone interviews, verifying clients’ personal health information, obtaining signatures on new patient forms, sending faxes, compiling charts, filing paperwork, scanning documents, maintaining the orderly appearance of the reception area, and ensuring that diagnostic results reach the appropriate healthcare providers.

Depending on the policies of the specific workplace, many medical office assistants also carry out tasks that are either directly or indirectly related to monetary collection. Some of these duties may include gathering information on health insurance payer sources, processing payments in exchange for healthcare services, generating receipts, making patients aware of co-payment and/or coinsurance amounts, scanning documents such as insurance cards, and setting up payment plans.

Since the field of medical assisting entails intensive contact with people, medical office assistants need to be extremely comfortable interacting with a variety of individuals including patients, physicians, coworkers, visitors, families, vendors and others. The role of a medical office assistant necessitates effective communication skills. In addition, medical office assistants must have the ability to quickly establish trust and cooperation with the multitude of people who visit the healthcare setting on a daily basis.

Medical office assistants are employed primarily in workplaces such as clinics, multi-specialty medical group practices, acute care hospital wards, physicians’ offices, and ambulatory surgical centers. After amassing several years of experience, some medical assistants secure employment as medical office assistant instructors at trade schools, community colleges, technical colleges, and private for-profit academies.

Persons with an interest in entering this career pathway must usually have a high school diploma or G.E.D. before completing a training program in medical assisting that results in a postsecondary certificate, diploma or associate of applied science degree. Medical office assistant diploma and certificate programs are typically less than one year long. On the other hand, programs that lead to an associate of applied science degree generally take two years to complete from start to finish.

Medical office assistant career training programs are offered at several different types of postsecondary schools such as technical colleges, community colleges, trade schools, state universities, vocational schools, adult education centers, regional occupational programs and private for-profit academies.

Most employers prefer to hire medical office assistants who possess a professional certification. As a result, a number of entities will certify the medical assistant’s vast fund of knowledge. The National Healthcareer Association, the National Center for Competency Testing and the American Medical Certification Association are three different entities that offer professional certification to medical office assistants.

Furthermore, medical office assistants remain in high demand in many employment markets for the near future. Employment of medical assistants is projected to increase by approximately 29 percent through the year 2026, which happens to be much faster than the average for all occupations. Much of this job growth is driven by grand openings and expansions of doctors’ offices, hospitals, clinics and multi-specialty group practices.

 

Healthcare Career Spotlight: the Phlebotomy Technician, a.k.a. Phlebotomist

white plastic syringe
Photo by Amornthep Srina on Pexels.com

A phlebotomy technician, also referred to as a phlebotomist at times, is an allied healthcare specialist whose primary responsibilities include blood withdrawal, specimen collection and finger sticks. Phlebotomy technicians have received occupational training to ensure they have the knowledge and psychomotor skills to draw blood and obtain specimens from patients with a certain degree of accuracy.

Phlebotomy technicians are immensely important members of the healthcare team because without their hands-on procedural skills, many physicians and other types of healthcare providers would not be able to accurately diagnose and treat their patients in a timely manner. The main duty of the phlebotomy technician is to obtain patients’ blood specimens by way of venipuncture and micro techniques.

In the healthcare field, venipuncture is a term that refers to the puncture of a vein, usually to withdraw a sample of blood for testing purposes. Phlebotomy technicians perform venipuncture on a routine basis to draw blood from patients. Phlebotomy technicians also obtain blood specimens by way of micro techniques such as sticking patients’ fingers with lancet devices and using pipettes.

Since phlebotomy involves extensive contact with people, phlebotomy technicians must be comfortable interacting with patients, coworkers, vendors and other individuals. The role of a phlebotomy technician requires effective communication skills as well as the ability to establish rapport and trust with patients. Phlebotomy technicians regularly interview patients prior to drawing their blood. They might also answer phone calls.

The healthcare specialty of phlebotomy has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few decades. Thus, the role of the phlebotomy technician has also grown to include an array of tasks that are clerical in nature such as light data entry, verification of patients’ personal health information, creating labels, filling in information on handwritten requisition forms, obtaining signatures, sending faxes, scanning documents and reordering supplies.

Depending on the place of employment, some phlebotomy technicians must also perform duties that involve financial matters. Some of these duties may include gathering info on health insurance payer sources, collecting payments in exchange for rendered services, printing receipts, notifying patients of their exact co-payment and/or coinsurance amounts, and making copies of documents such as insurance cards.

Phlebotomy technicians are employed mostly in workplaces such as acute care hospitals, medical and diagnostic laboratories, blood bank donor collection centers, clinics, and physicians’ offices. After accruing several years of experience, some phlebotomists secure employment as phlebotomy instructors at vocational schools, community colleges and private for-profit academies. Most employers seek phlebotomists who have attained professional certification.

Patient safety is of the essence, so phlebotomy technicians must strictly adhere to all safety precautions in order to prevent the transmission of infectious diseases such as hepatitis C, AIDS, and so forth. Since quality assurance, safety and accuracy must be upheld in the healthcare specialty of phlebotomy, stringent professional behavior requirements and standards of practice exist for phlebotomy technicians.

Persons interested in entering the field must have a high school diploma or G.E.D. before completing a vocational training program in phlebotomy that leads to a postsecondary certificate or diploma. Phlebotomy training programs are offered at many types of postsecondary institutions such as community colleges, state universities, vocational schools, and private for-profit academies. These programs vary in length, but most are only a few months long.

Since the majority of employers prefer to hire phlebotomists who have professional certification, many entities will certify the phlebotomy technician’s body of knowledge. The National Healthcareer Association, the American Society for Clinical Pathology, the National Phlebotomy Association, the Association of Phlebotomy Technicians, and the American Medical Certification Association are five entities that offer professional certification to phlebotomy technicians.

Phlebotomy technicians are in high demand for the near future. Job openings have increased noticeably because many healthcare workplaces need to hire phlebotomy technicians for all three shifts to ensure 24-hour staffing coverage. Employment of phlebotomy technicians is projected to increase by 27 percent through the year 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations.