New Program Builds on Existing Course Offerings to Meet Healthcare Industry Needs
Chalmette, LA— Beginning in January 2017, Nunez Community College will offer a new patient care technician certificate program. The certificate of technical studies builds upon some of the College’s existing programs in certified nursing assistant, electrocardiogram (EKG) technician, and medical office management, and includes the new phlebotomy program which will also be offered for the first time this spring. The patient care technician program will prepare graduates for entry-level employment in a variety of healthcare settings.
Patient care technicians tend to ill and injured people under the supervision of doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals. Duties include taking vital signs, collecting specimens for testing, and assisting patients with eating and personal hygiene. Patient care technicians also assist with charting and make notes and assessments of the care they are providing. They may use their education and experience to pursue more advanced health careers with additional training.
“The advantage of the patient care technician program is that students can take one or more classes per semester and obtain skills and credentials along the way in nursing assistant, EKG tech, and phlebotomy. This allows for them to work while in school, if they choose to. Classes can be taken in any order and at as fast or slow of a pace as needed. This program helps students enter the health care profession quickly and to continuously build on their knowledge,” said Shirley Millbern, a health sciences faculty member at Nunez Community College.
Health sciences faculty and academic administrators worked closely with local healthcare agencies to develop the patient care technician program. At St. Bernard Parish Hospital, located near the Nunez campus, patient care technician program graduates can work in multiple roles because they are trained in several specialties. This gives graduates a competitive advantage when seeking employment.
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for medical assistants (the broader category of employment which includes patient care technicians) nationwide is expected to grow 23% through 2024, much faster than the average growth rate for a career field of seven percent. Also according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean in the Greater New Orleans region for medical assistants was $28,300.00 per year in 2015, the most recent year for which data are available.
Spring 2017 course registration at Nunez Community College is open now. Applications can be submitted online at www.nunez.edu. Online registration will be available through the start of classes on Tuesday, January 17. New or returning students in need of advising or registration assistance can contact the Office of Student Affairs at (504) 278-6467 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The next on-campus registration assistance days will be Wednesday, January 11 – Saturday, January 14.
Nunez Community College is an open-enrollment comprehensive community college offering over 30 academic and technical programs, including new programs in Business Information Technology and Allied Health. To schedule a campus tour go to www.nunez.edu/visit or call (504) 278-6467.