Patient Care Degree and Certificate Programs
Read about patient care certificate programs, including what types of schools offer them and what the curriculum includes. Find out about skills needed in this profession, and learn about certification, employment projections and salary expectations.
Patient care technicians provide supportive and technical services to patients in health care settings such as hospitals and nursing homes. Patient care technician education typically occurs through certificate programs offered by 2-year colleges and vocational schools.
A patient care technician certificate program provides specialized training in communicating with patients, documenting medical information, performing technical procedures and tending to patient needs. Patient care programs are similar to nursing assistant programs; however, they offer greater technical training and build upon the skills of a nurse's aide. It's common for patient care certificate programs to also award nursing assistant certificates because they cover many of the same courses.
Graduates often find employment in clinics, assisted living facilities, rehabilitation centers, hospitals, private practices and long-term care facilities. Upon earning certificates in patient care, individuals may choose to seek national certification by taking the National Certified Patient Care Technician (NCPCT) exam. National certification often expands employment opportunities.
Prospective students must have high school diplomas or GEDs for admission into certificate or degree programs. Academic transcripts are required.
A certificate program in patient care may take one year to complete. In addition to learning basic patient care skills, students receive lab instruction and participate in supervised clinical activities. Courses may include the following:
- Medical terminology
- Expanded patient care principles
- Anatomy and physiology
- Health care ethics
- Patient care clinical practicum
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Because patient care technician is a relatively new healthcare role, employment outlook data is difficult to find. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2012, nursing assistants earned a median annual wage of $24,420, depending on years of experience.
Continuing Education Information
Undergraduate degree programs in nursing or medical assisting are available for individuals seeking to further their patient care skills and employment opportunities. Associate's degree options include the Associate of Applied Science in Nursing and the Associate of Science in Medical Assisting. At the baccalaureate level, student may pursue the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.
Related to Patient Care Aide Certificate
- Recently Updated
Students who receive a certificate in patient care are able to become patient care technicians, often times becoming the person...
Also known as patient care technicians (PCTs), patient care associates provide hands-on assistance to patients under the...
Patient care attendants help patients who are unable to take care of themselves or perform regular daily routines. This can...
Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a patient care coordinator. Get a quick view of the requirements as...
- Online Patient Care Technician Classes and Courses
- Patient Care Technician: Job Description & Career Info
- Patient Care Administrator: Job Description & Career Requirements
- Oncology Doctor: Salary, Job Duties and Education Requirements
- Administrative Manager: Job Description & Certification Info
- Press Agent: Job Description, Duties and Salary
- Nursing Home Administrator License and Credential Information