Are you thinking about starting a CNA training class? These classes teach individuals how to properly care for patients in various types of medical facilities. You will learn how to take vital signs, check for infections and bed sores, help your patients with daily activities like walking, bathing, and eating, and learn infection control.
CNA training classes can be held in hospitals, nursing homes, nursing schools, and academic institutions like community colleges. These facilities will offer both classroom work and hands-on training to individuals who wish to become certified nursing assistants. In order to be accepted into these programs, however, there are certain prerequisites you must complete first. While we have discussed many of these prerequisites in our previous article, today we are going to discuss the physical exam some CNA training courses require.
CNA Training Physical Exam
While the exact nature of the physical exam will differ from state to state, most CNA training facilities require some form of exam before you can be enrolled in the class. In most cases, although not in all, this exam includes the following.
- Vaccinations- Graduating from CNA training means you will be working with patients suffering from many different diseases. You don’t want to pass on a disease or infection from one patient to another, become sick yourself, or cause your patients to become even sicker. For this reason, most CNA training facilities require you to obtain certain vaccinations or provide proof that you have already obtained these vaccinations, like the MMR (Measles, mumps, and rubella,) varicella (the chicken pox vaccine,) and Hepatitis A and B. Some may require more than one vaccination, like the Hepatitis A and B that requires three separate shots. Some facilities may also require you to obtain a flu shot before you begin CNA training classes and verify that you have had a tetanus shot within the last ten years.
- TB Test- Either before or during your CNA training, you will be asked to take a TB test. Some facilities have registered nurses on staff that can perform this test within the facility, while others will send you to your local health department. If you are required to pay for the test, the cost is minimal, usually ranging between $7 and $10. During this test, a nurse will use a needle to insert 0.1 ml of PPD into the top layer of your skin, right below the surface. This is typically done on your forearm, and produces a wheal, or a slight bump on the skin. This wheal generally disappears quickly. The area is checked again 48 to 72 hours after this to see if there is any reaction. In individuals who have not been exposed to tuberculosis and do not have it, no reaction will occur.
- Physical Aptitude- While many CNA training facilities do not require you to actually demonstrate your physical aptitude for the job, some do. They will often judge the amount you can lift, to see if you will be able to perform the duties required of a CNA before they accept you for enrollment in the CNA training class.
Physical Exams are Necessary Before CNA Training
To ensure individuals are capable of performing as nursing assistants and are free of communicable diseases, these physical exams are necessary. Make sure you take every precaution necessary to ensure you are free of diseases that could stand in your way of enrolling in CNA training.