Every day hundreds of seniors depend on the services of a nursing assistant to help them with personal care and comfort. Of all the healthcare team, nurse aides have the most direct contact with patients, providing up to 90 percent of the care patients receive. Nurse aides work on the front lines of health care. They report directly to a licensed practical nurse or registered nurse in a nursing home or other health care facility. Nurse aides monitor patients closely to identify changes in their physical or emotional well-being or adverse reactions to medication or treatment, keep patients’ rooms tidy, bathe, dress, and groom patients, turn and position bed-ridden patients, answer call lights, set up medical equip, measure fluid intake and output, empty bedpans, and work with nurses to provide rehabilitative treatments.
In order to become a nurse aide in Pennsylvania, you must complete an approved CNA class and pass the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program Evaluation to be listed on the Pennsylvania Nurse Aide Registry. In addition to the academics and practical skills, you must be dependable, have a genuine care for others, physically and emotionally stable, detail-oriented, trustworthy, and willing.
Hazleton Area Career & Technical Center
Students enrolled in the certified nursing class at Hazleton Area Career & Technical Center will learn basic nursing skills that will enable them to make beds and keep patients’ rooms tidy, assist with bathing, dressing, and other personal care, move and transport patients, ensure patient safety, and apply the principles of infection control. Instruction will take place in the classroom. Hands-on practice of essential skills will take place in a nursing laboratory on campus. Key skills include measuring and recording temperature, blood pressure, respiration, and pulse. During the final stages of the program, students will participate in a 60-hour assisted living rotation and clinical rotation in a long-term care facility. Students will have a further opportunity to develop skills through ten weeks of clinical practice at a local hospital. Students who successfully complete the program will be eligible to take the Pennsylvania State Nurse Aide Certification Exam. The program is targeted to students in grade 10, 11, and 12. Graduates will obtain articulated credits at many post-secondary institutions in PA through SOAR.
- Website: https://www.hasdk12.org/Page/6494
- Address: 1451 West 23rd Street, Hazle Township, PA 18202
- Phone: 570-459-3221
- Fax: 570-459-3181
Pennsylvania State University
The Nurse Aide program at Pennsylvania State University prepares students to provide direct care in the role of a nurse aide. The curriculum covers 128 hours of theory and practical instruction. The clinical experience will be held at one of two long-term care facilities. Course topics include introduction to health care, basic nursing and personal care skills, behavioral health and social service needs, restorative care, and care of cognitively impaired patients. Program graduates will be prepared to take the Pennsylvania Nurse Aide Competency Evaluation Test to be added to the PA Nurse Aide Registry. The program is targeted to adults who are interested in a career as a nurse aide or enrolling in a CMA, PN, or RN program. The program is offered on part-time and full-time schedules. Part-time classes meet Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 4:00 pm to 9:30 pm for 6 weeks. Full-time classes meet Monday through Thursday from 7:00 am to 3:30 pm for 4 weeks.
- Must have or be pursuing a high school diploma or GED
- Obtain a criminal background check
- Pass a drug screen
- Obtain TB clearance
Tuition for the program is $950 and includes textbook and Criminal History Record Information Report.
- Website: https://hazleton.psu.edu/nurse-aide-program
- Address: 76 University Drive, Hazleton, PA 18202
- Phone: 570-450-3000
Lackawanna College – Hazleton Center
The nurse aide program at Lackawanna College is conducted by an experienced registered nurse. The program is 128 hours and includes hands-on, supervised clinical rotations in a long-term care facility. In accordance with the guidelines outlined by the Pennsylvania State Department of Education, the program includes 40 hours of lab practice and 44 hours of clinical practice directed by a registered nurse instructor. Additionally, the training will include 32 specialized hours of CPR training, exposure to various health care facilities, lab practice, and preparation for the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program Examination. Areas of study include medical terminology, basic nursing skills, infection control, anatomy and physiology, role and responsibility of a nurse aide, range of motion exercise, positioning and transfers, feeding and nutrition, communication, Alzheimer’s care, mental health, patient rights and independence, rehabilitation and restoration, and cognitive care. Graduates will be eligible to take the NNAAP exam to be added to the Nurse Aide Registry.
- Attend an on-campus interview with the Nurse Aide Program Coordinator
- Provide proof of completing high school or GED
- Have a current PA driver’s license or other state ID and another secondary ID
- Submit to a PA criminal history background check – the cost is $22
- Complete an FBI background clearance check of criminal offenses – for applicants who have not lived for a full two years in PA
- Sign the Essential Functions of the Nurse Aide document
- Take and pass an entrance exam
- Complete a physical exam – report must indicate the physician’s approval to perform the duties of a nurse aide
- Obtain negative TB test results
Tuition assistance is available for eligible students.
- Website: https://www.lackawanna.edu/
- Address: 2 East Broad Street, Hazleton, PA.
- Phone: (570) 459-1573
West Side CTC
West Side CTC hosts a Health Related Technologies program that covers a broad range of topics to prepare students for a career in healthcare and post-secondary studies. The training includes academics and practical instruction in a skills lab and long-term care facility. Students will learn how to assist students in allied health diagnosis and rehabilitation. They will be prepared to take the state exam for CNA certification. Course topics will include body structure and function, diagnosis and rehabilitation, basic health skills, personal hygiene, infection control, vital signs, human anatomy and physiology, microbiology, chemistry, medical terminology, biology, and computer literacy. Students who complete the program will be eligible for certification in Adult CPR, First Aid, Infant and Child CPR, Community First Aid and Safety, AED Essentials, and Nurse Aide Registry.
- Website: http://wsctc.net/programs/careertech/health.html
- Address: 75 Evans St. Kingston 18704
- Phone: (570) 288-8493
Keystone Job Corps Center
The nurse aide curriculum at Keystone Job Corps Center is designed to teach students how to care for culturally diverse residents in long-term care. Students will learn how to control infection, measure and record vital signs, manage patient safety, care for cognitively impaired patients, position and turn patients, assist patients with bathing, dressing, eating, grooming and other personal activities, and take directions from a licensed nurse. Training in the classroom will cover medical terminology, basic nursing skills, observation and reporting, communication, nutrition, measuring fluid intake and output, personal care skills, and patients’ rights. Students will participate in clinical rotations at various long-term care facilities. The maximum time for completing the program is 18 months. Graduates of the state-approved program must take the Nurse Aide Competency Exam to be added to the Pennsylvania Nurse Aide Registry.
- Must be between the ages of 16 to 24
- Comply with the background check requirements and have no felonies or other offenses
- Have a high school diploma or GED equivalent
- Demonstrate and reading and math proficiency
Job Corps training is free for eligible students. Expenses for textbooks, uniforms, state examination, and the nursing kit will be covered for the student.
- Website: https://keystone.jobcorps.gov/
- Address: 235 W Foothills Dr. Drums, PA 18222-2410
- Toll-Free: 800 733-JOBS
- Alt: 800 733-5627