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Patient Care Tech Training

Patient care technician training requires completion of a course of study, certification and licensing by one of several national certification boards in order to practice in a health care facility.

A high school diploma or equivalent is required as one of the criteria for certification. An associates or bachelors degree is not required; a certificate in patient care from an accredited institution provides the appropriate coursework and experience that can lead to board certification and licensing.

Also called nursing assistants and orderlies the patient care technician works under doctors and nurses in a health care setting.

Patient care tech programs include medical terminology, basic human anatomy and physiology, medical ethics and applicable laws, phlebotomy, communication, basic principles of patient care and elements of clinical practice.

Students also learn elements of nutrition, CPR, infection control, first aid and medical safety.

Introduction to medical coding and billing is also a part of training.

Clinical practice includes learning how to take patient vital signs, EKG procedures and catheterization.

Specializations in patient care include geriatrics, mental health and psychiatry, and several advanced levels of certified nursing assistant.

Each specialization requires additional specific coursework and clinical training. Certificate courses are available on-line, although on-site clinical practice may be required.

Community colleges and allied health medical programs also provide certificate courses in patient care and all states require national certification; many require state licensing.

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