HCP work is an extremely competitive field. Whether you are a CNA, LVN, or RN, you are competing for a limited number of roles with hundreds (if not thousands) of fellow applicants. If you want to land the healthcare position of your dreams. To give themselves an edge, many HCPs often opt for additional certifications. These are earned by attending short, specialized training programs that train you in a facet of nursing.
The benefits are twofold. You gain desirable skills and credentials that help your resume stand out, from a sea of CVs. Beyond this, they represent a chance for growth. You get to develop your knowledge and competencies in very specific areas. This lets you grow in skill as an HCP and may potentially show you career paths you did not consider.
Whether you are looking to bolster your resume or advance your career, these are the most desirable certifications for RNs, LVNs and CNAs.
Critical Care Nursing (CCRN)
Before you can sign up for this certification, you need one of two requirements: 1,750 hours of direct care for acute and/or critical adult patients or 2,000 hours of such direct care within the last 5 years, along with an examination. This course teaches you how to handle a variety of acute/critical injuries and illnesses, across different specializations. This makes CCRN a popular certification, regardless of your specialization.
Management of Assaultive Behavior (MAB)
HCPs will be required to interact with patients who are dealing with stress, loss or crippling physical conditions. Naturally, they can become prone to hostile behaviors or volatile mood swings, depending on their current situation. MAB trains you on how to de-escalate these situations in a calm and level-headed manner. This certification shows your managers that you care about patient safety and maintaining peace, in the workplace.
Certified Emergency Nurse (CEN)
Though two years of prior emergency nursing experience is recommended, it is not required. This course will empower you with the knowledge and skills needed to provide lifesaving care, under pressure, to all age demographics. This certification will make you more hireable to emergency departments in various settings.
Certified Alzheimer’s Caregiver (CAC)
Certified nursing assistants commonly handle patients with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. These conditions cripple a patient’s capacity to carry out even the most basic tasks, such as eating, communicating, or remembering things. CAC certification will train you on how to provide the best possible care for such patients in long-term care settings while communicating with patient families. You will need CNA/LPN/RN certification and 6 months of direct care experience with dementia patients, in order to avail of these programs.
Certified Medication Aide (CMA)
Administering medications is not a task that just any CNA can take up. You are required to follow the physician’s orders by letter, including when to give the medications, how to give them, and in what doses. Small mistakes can lead to serious consequences. CMA certification allows CNAs to take on these greater responsibilities in the workplace, while potentially opening the door for future career advancement. To qualify for the certification exam, you need to graduate from a program accredited by either the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). or the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).
Refer to the American Association of Medical Assistants page for more details.
Certified Nursing Assistant- Advanced (CNAA)
The CNAA allows CNAs to further advance and hone their caregiving skills. This course was created to prepare nursing assistants for greater, more specialized roles in home health settings, long-term care facilities and more. You will be trained in reading vital signs, caring for wounds, patient safety and more. To qualify for the CNAA, you need to fulfil a number of educational requirements including the completion of an accredited CNA program, and one year of salaried experience as a CNA in a recognized setting. Once you graduate, you must pass the certification exam provided by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN.)
Though LPNs are typically expected to administer IVs, there are certain limitations. IV Therapy certification allows you to further hone this critical skill while making you more desirable as a hire for hospitals, long-term care facilities, and more. As the fastest method of transferring medications or blood products, this is an in-demand skill that transfers to a variety of different settings. You will be taught how to handle all kinds of IV equipment, different kinds of IV fluids, calculating infusion flow rate, and more.
Wound Care Certification (WCC)
As an LVN, you will be expected to treat different kinds of wounds. From hospitals to acute care facilities to physician offices, wound care is a desirable trait in every healthcare setting imaginable. This is why WCC is such a popular option for LVNs, as well as HCPs of all levels. You will be taught how to treat skin and wounds at a much higher proficiency level. There are numerous requirements, depending on your condition, and they are all listed on the official WCC site.
With this degree, LPNs will be taught how to administer and handle drugs in a safe manner. The course material covers (among other things), medical assessments, all the drug classifications, and the proper procedure for handling intravenous fluid (IV) drips and proper dosage for medications.