Are you thinking about starting a nursing career? If you are you must look at all the options available before you finalize the career path.
Nursing degrees require you to attend college for years and they cost a lot. In the present economic situation it may not be feasible to all. But you have one more option which will consume only a few weeks and won’t be too costly either.
Become a certified nursing assistant; a profession which is in huge demands due to the growth in the ageing population and increased health awareness in the United States.
CNA nursing schools in South Dakota are training aspiring nurses to meet this growing demand in the state.
Nurse aides support patients in basic healthcare requirements like bathing, dressing, eating, ambulating patients, light exercises etc.
You have to take vital signs of patients like blood pressure, temperature etc., record them and report the changes to the registered nurse.
These are not highly specialized duties, but as you have to work in the healthcare field basic training is essential.
Some of the most popular CNA classes in South Dakota are conducted at
- Avera Education and Staffing Solutions in Yankton
- Sinte Gleska University in Mission
- Western Dakota Technical Institute in Rapid City
- Bennett County Hospital and Nursing Home in Martin
- Belle Fourche Regional Senior Care in Belle Fourche
The Rapid City chapter of the American Red Cross Society also offers CNA training.
These are all popular institutes because of the excellent training modules that are conducted by them.
Becoming a Nurse Aide in South Dakota
The South Dakota Board of Nursing (SDBN) supervises the training programs and certification of nursing assistants.
They regularly evaluate the training modules of approved programs and if a certain program is not living up to the expectations, it no longer features in the list of recognized programs.
You should make sure that the program you join is approved by the SDBN; you can find a list of such programs on the nursing board’s website.
Some of the other prerequisites for CNA certification in South Dakota are the same as in majority of the American states.
You should submit a report of immunization which should state that you are not suffering any infectious illness.
Two fingerprint cards must be submitted for the FBI background check; if you are guilty of any offenses other than minor traffic infringement you will be disqualified for the certification. It is required that you have celebrated your 18th birthday and have a high school diploma.
The cost of training in SD is between $500 and $1500 and classes last for six to twelve weeks.
The programs that include all the expenses from books and supplies to exam fees, background and medical check are the ones that charge higher fee.
Another factor that determines the cost is the number of hours of training. Some programs offer more hours for clinical training so that students can have maximum exposure to these skills. The exam fee is $155.
How Long Does It Take To Become a CNA in South Dakota?
All recognized CNA programs in South Dakota should provide training for minimum 75 hours.
Out of these 59 hours are for classroom study and subjects like communication and interpersonal skills, infection control, safety/emergency procedures, promoting residents’ independence, respecting residents’ rights should be taught before students come in direct contact with the patients.
The remaining 16 hours are for clinical training where the students will learn basic nursing skills (including documentation), personal care skills, mental health and social services, care of cognitively impaired clients and basic restorative nursing services.
You can face the state certification exam after the completion of the training program.
The exam has two components; first is the written part which has multiple choice questions to test your theoretical knowledge and for the skills part you have to demonstrate five clinical skills of the examiner’s choice.
You have to score 80 percent in the written part and the skills should be performed to the satisfaction of the examiner.
After clearing the exam you will receive a license and your name will be listed on the nurse aide registry.
The license is valid for two years and to get it renewed you must engage in professional practice for at least eight hours.
You should not have any charges of patient ill-treatment or criminal charges to qualify for renewal.
Other state nurse aides can fill the Interstate Endorsement form to transfer their license to South Dakota.
How Much Does a CNA Make in South Dakota?
As of January 2016 there were more than 6,000 active nursing assistants on the nurse aide registry and the nursing board expects that there will be at least 1,000 new job openings a year for nurse aides over the period of five to ten years.
So have many employment opportunities will be available for new entrants into this profession.
The salary range in the state starts at $17,000 and it can go up to $32,000 if you specialize in any of the fields like pediatrics, geriatrics, psychiatrics etc.
The average CNA salary in South Dakota is $24,000 every year which is below the national average but with the growing demand the salaries are bound to rise.
If you go on to become a LPN your average salary will be $40,000 and a RN can earn $64,000 a year.
Opportunities for nurse aide are very good and if you are looking forward to a secure job with great growth potential enroll in one of the CNA nursing schools in South Dakota.