Most do not realize that a patient care technician position is an excellent option for getting your foot in the door within the medical industry.
It is a highly rewarding career with countless job opportunities, certifications, and specializations, including emergency department technician, hospital caregiver, EKG technician, and dialysis technician.
This role helps you determine if you wish to continue your education into a different specialization, proceed higher with your education, or remain as a patient care technician.
Although certification is not required, it is highly advisable and can only be earned by taking a training program, which can be completed in under one year.
Once completed and starting the job search, you can work in a variety of locations and enter the medical field quickly.
Also, you gain the benefit of having every day different, so the position never becomes boring.
If all this sounds good and you want to be effective in your career by helping others, keep reading to learn more about this wonderful career opportunity!
Article Table of Contents
- 1 What Courses Are in an Online Patient Care Technician Program?
- 2 Can You Earn a Patient Care Technician Certification Completely Online?
- 3 How Long Does It Take to Earn a Patient Care Technician Certification Online?
- 4 How Much Does an Online Patient Care Technician Certification Cost?
- 5 Types of Patient Care Technician Certifications
- 6 Benefits of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs
- 7 Drawbacks of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs
- 8 Benefits and Drawbacks of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs – Summary Table
- 9 4 Self-Study Tips for Patient Care Technician Online Students
- 10 Schools Offering Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs
- 11 Summary
- 12 Sources
- 13 Frequently Asked Questions
What Courses Are in an Online Patient Care Technician Program?
Although the course names vary based on the school, students enrolled in patient care technician programs will learn:
- Accurately and effectively taking physical measurements and health history.
- Anatomy, physiology, and mechanisms of disease.
- Assisting with the physical needs of patients.
- CPR and first aid.
- End-of-life care.
- Interpersonal skills and business communication.
- Medical terminology.
- Surgical asepsis and pharmacology
- The role of assistive personnel in healthcare.
Can You Earn a Patient Care Technician Certification Completely Online?
While many schools offer online patient care technician programs with all coursework being completed from your home or office, clinical requirements must be completed at an approved healthcare facility.
A hybrid program gives you the benefit of online coursework with hands-on clinical experience, so you are fully prepared to enter the field.
We have created this comprehensive guide on how to become a patient care technician to help you with step-by-step instructions.
How Long Does It Take to Earn a Patient Care Technician Certification Online?
Online patient care technician programs can be completed in around one year, depending on the speed at which you wish to learn.
Before signing up for an online program, you want to evaluate the accreditation and included training to ensure it meets the requirements to find a job in the field.
How Much Does an Online Patient Care Technician Certification Cost?
Online patient care technician programs vary greatly based on the school’s reputation, the length of the course, and the detail of the course.
However, the costs range from $2,500 to $4,000.
Types of Patient Care Technician Certifications
Certifications are a powerful resource to highlight employees that you know your stuff in one or many areas.
There are 20 patient care technician certifications you can earn after graduation.
- Patient Care Technician,
- Certified Phlebotomy Technician,
- Emergency Medical Technician,
- Certified Clinical Hemodialysis Technician,
- Certified Nurse Technician,
- Phlebotomy Technician,
- Certified Pharmacy Technician,
- Certified EKG Technician.
Additional certifications include:
- Certified Patient Care Technician,
- Certificate Clinical Medical Assistant,
- Registered Medical Assistant,
- Certified Medical Administrative Assistant,
- Certified Hemodialysis Technician,
- Patient Care Technician,
- EKG Technician
- Certified Patient Care Associate.
Other certifications include:
- Medication Aide Certification,
- Certified Medical Office Manager,
- Nationally Certified Medical Assistant,
- Nationally Certified Medical Office Assistant.
Benefits of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs
Many students opt for an online patient care technician program for a variety of reasons.
While in-person clinical work is still required, completing the coursework from home compared to a classroom offers the following benefits.
Additional Free Time
Since you will not be commuting to the classroom, you have more free time.
While online patient care technician classes require hours of studying, you can use the free time to complete coursework or simply relax.
Develop Time Management Skills
The time management requirement is always positive and negative.
On the positive side, if you currently have poor time management skills, taking an online patient care technician program will force you to sharpen it.
When you do not need to trek to campus for class, procrastination can easily set in.
The most successful online students force the implementation of good time management skills.
You must regularly set aside time to study throughout the week.
While this may be difficult at first, once you get into a routine, it will help your studies and career.
One of the greatest benefits of an online patient care technician training program is flexibility.
An online program allows you to schedule your studies and learning around your life, not vice-versa.
Traditional classroom programs are at the same time and place each week.
However, online programs allow you to watch lectures wherever and whenever you want.
That means if you are a morning person, you can study before work.
If you prefer the night, you can take classes before bed.
If work or your social life hinders you from attending class on a Tuesday, you can do the coursework on Wednesday.
Increased Learning Quality
That moment when your mind drifts during a long and boring class lecture could easily cause you to fall behind.
However, online patient care technician training programs allow you to rewatch lectures as many times as you want, which helps you learn complicated material.
Most courses offer supplemental reading materials with study guides to keep students engaged.
Drawbacks of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs
Like with any online program, there are several drawbacks that you should be aware of, including:
Increased Screen Time
Excessive screen time can lead to a variety of physical ailments including headaches, strained eyes, and poor posture.
Another challenge is for those students who struggle learning from a screen or cannot focus, especially with the Internet being designed to get your attention.
This can be incredibly distracting from the learning material when studying at home.
Prone to Technical Issues
The most basic disadvantage of an online program centers around technical issues.
When connection, video, or audio challenges arise, the result is a major disruption to the flow of learning.
Luckily, online classes can be accessed through apps or links without the need to download clunky and buggy software, as in the past.
Physically attending class places you in a community of students, which increases accountability.
However, in an online patient care technician training program, if students feel like they are not receiving proper guidance, they may lose interest and engagement.
Without the instructor’s physical presence, it is up to you to increase self-discipline and get back on track with the material.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs – Summary Table
|Benefits of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs||Drawbacks of Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs|
|Additional Free Time||Increased Screen Time|
|Develop Time Management Skills||Prone to Technical Issues|
|Improved Flexibility||Self-Discipline Requirement|
|Increased Learning Quality|
4 Self-Study Tips for Patient Care Technician Online Students
Many tips and tricks applicable to online patient care technician students are employed by parents during schooling years about the learning process.
However, you may have developed bad habits or forgotten tips from your school-age years.
Here is a reminder of several tips that can be utilized for online studies:
Confirm Technical Requirements
The primary difference between studying for an online patient care technician program and learning at an in-person classroom is that you are responsible for the environment.
You provide the computer, a workplace, and additional items, including equipment with the required technical requirements.
For most online courses, a computer with internet access is sufficient.
However, you may be required to have additional hardware or software to be successful.
It is always advisable to determine this before the beginning of the course, so you have time to purchase the necessities.
Develop a Dedicated Study Area
To be successful in an online patient care technician program, you do not need to replicate your third-grade classroom.
However, you must create a distraction-free and comfortable place to study and work.
There are several critical qualifies of a place to study and learn, including:
- Ambiance – some can work in a crowded restaurant or coffee shop while others require silence, and some can listen to music or have the television on. Never assume you learn best in silence. Try various environments to determine which is most effective for you.
- Distractions – let everyone in your household and family know you are taking an online patient care technician class, so they will not bother you while you are learning. You should also close your browser, except those for studying, and turn off your phone.
- Ergonomics – if you attempt to sit on the floor with a balanced laptop then you are going to have aching shoulders, a stiff neck, and sore behind. Ergonomic workspaces allow for the focus and motivation of the materials. When you are uncomfortable with stiffness and pain, you will be distracted from your work.
- Light – A dark room can be depressing and claustrophobic, which leads to fatigue and eye strain. If your office or home is dark, add extra light sources like lamps with rotating heads.
- Supplies – Will you need a bottle of water, a cup of coffee, or a snack before starting your work? Before sitting down to study, ensure all supplies, food, and drinks are within reach, so you are not interrupted during your coursework.
Many utilize their home offices, which also offer an ideal study location, but it is not the only choice.
Also consider your bedroom, kitchen, or dining room if there are no detrimental distractions.
Furthermore, always select the correct time of day for learning and studying as you may find the mornings before work to be best, or the evenings before bed.
Find your Learning Goals and Objectives
When you first enter any online patient care technician class, you must understand and align your goals for the course with the instructors.
That means you should read as much about the course as possible before starting and contact the instructor to understand the course objectives.
This will allow you to properly prepare by writing down and comparing your objectives to the course goals.
Review them daily before studying the course material and keep them in mind as you navigate through the course.
This same tip can be applied to the entire program, allowing you to check off goals as you proceed.
Understand Online Learning Practices
Most jump into an online patient care technician class with a lax attitude since there are online courses.
If you immediately have this approach, you are cheating yourself out of a valuable learning experience.
Approach online courses the same as if you were in a classroom with the professional 10 feet away.
You always want to determine the desired result.
Is it mastering a specific skill, acquiring a certification or license, expanding knowledge, improving your competence, feeling more comfortable about a topic, or gaining a basic understanding of a subject?
When clear about your expectations, you are less likely to become disappointed once the course ends.
Schools Offering Online Patient Care Technician Training Programs
|U.S. Career Institute||2001 Lowe Street, Fort Collins, CO 80525|
|College of Staten Island||2800 Victory Blvd Staten Island, NY 10314|
|MedCerts LLC||14143 Farmington Road Livonia, MI 48154|
|Midlands Technical College||316 S Beltline Blvd, Columbia, SC 29205|
|Phlebotomy Training Center||28050 Ford Rd, Ste C Garden City, MI 48135|
|College of Western Idaho||P.O. Box 3010, Nampa, ID 83653|
|Lone Star College System Office||5000 Research Forest Drive The Woodlands, Texas 77381|
There are countless advantages with some disadvantages to taking an online patient care technician program.
However, knowing that in-person clinical time is required, completing the coursework online may be a good fit for your schedule.
If you possess the required qualities of a patient care technician and are excited about entering the medical field with major room for advancement, then you should begin with an online program!
Frequently Asked Questions
Where do patient care technicians work?
Patient care technicians can work in nursing care facilities, extended care facilities, home healthcare agencies, doctors’ offices, medical labs, and hospitals.
How does a patient care technician differ from other healthcare positions?
A patient care technician works on the front lines in delivering effective and comfortable patient care.
Patient care technicians differ from other healthcare professionals based on where they work, the tasks they perform, and their patients.
For instance, a patient care technician could work in a hospital with numerous patient types, whereas a nurse aide may work in a nursing home or extended care facility.
I have no healthcare experience. Is a patient care technician the right job for me?
Yes, numerous patient care technicians have no healthcare experience before taking online training.
For this reason, it is critical for patient care technician students to rigorously evaluate training and schooling options.
What are the most important patient care technician characteristics?
Patient care technicians must boast excellent physical stamina, patience, compassion, and communication skills.
If you are lacking in one or several of these areas, then it does not mean you would not be good at the job.
This could also be a good improvement for your training.