Becoming a Patient Care Technician (PCT) in Illinois sets you on the path to success in other state-recommended programs.
It is like being a Medical Assistant (MA), Phlebotomist, and EKG specialist all in one and preparing for beginning and advanced nurse training.
Article Table of Contents
- 1 Licensing Requirements to Become a Patient Care Technician In Illinois
- 2 5 Patient Care Technician Schools in Illinois
- 3 Salary
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions
Licensing Requirements to Become a Patient Care Technician In Illinois
Illinois does not have an established set of protocols specifically for Patient Care Technicians (PCTs).
However, you can acquire a certificate for this role if you study for the Certified Patient Care Technician/Assistant (CPCT/A) credential offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
The American Education Certification Association (AECA) offers a similar credential called the Certified Patient Care Technician/Assistant Level I (CPCT Level I).
Likewise, the National Performance Specialists (NPS) provides a Certified Patient Care Technician (CPCT).
All these three credentialing opportunities make up what you would need to become employed and hold down a job as a PCT.
For this position, however, you must graduate from a state-approved program before you can make it into the Illinois Nurse Aid Registry.
This may require you to take additional courses, such as ones that would prepare you to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) or a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN).
Another option to consider is enrollment in a Medical Assistant course, which helps you develop similar skills in a caretaking role.
By the way, you will find that job postings falling under “Patient Care Technician” often require some kind of nursing certificate, usually at least a CNA credential.
Additional certifications, such as phlebotomy or EKG Tech ones, are what prepare you for more advanced nursing positions.
5 Patient Care Technician Schools in Illinois
1. Carl Sandburg College
The Patient Care Technician Certificate program offered by Sandburg College provides onsite experience for students.
You will learn first-hand what it is like to interact with patients while you measure their vital signs, prepare them for EKG heart machine readings, and extract blood from them for testing.
It helps you acquire training for multiple certificates, including the EKG Technician or Phlebotomist ones.
These skills make up the position known as the PCT or CPCT and take about a year (three semesters including a summer term) to complete.
2. The City College of Chicago
This Illinois school offers you a class tailored for NHA CPCT exam preparation.
Your enrollment in this program will prepare you for an entry-level PCT position.
Topics covered include blood drawing (phlebotomy), infection control, 12-lead ECG (EKG) machine readings, and patient mobility guidance.
Your time spent enrolled in this coursework will also place you in working environments where you will practice your caretaking and communication skills.
This training may only take a semester, depending on how many certifications you pursue.
3. Black Hawk College
The Black Hawk Patient Care Assistant Certificate is for students who have already completed a Patient Care Aid Certificate Program, which occurs during the first semester.
Certifications you could earn during this training include Advanced First Aid and Emergency Red Cross and Phlebotomy certificates.
Completion of this PCT (PCA) course, will prepare you for the Nurse Assistant exam that the state requires.
The school offers Adult Education assistance to students enrolled in this program.
It takes about two semesters (less than a year) to complete.
4. South Suburban College (SSC)
The Patient Care Technician Program at SSC allows you to accumulate your credentials as you explore new careers related to the one you are employed in now.
This learning phenomenon, known as “stackable credentials,” allows people training in a PCT program to also earn a Phlebotomy or EKG Technician certificate, for instance.
The PCT training will also prepare you for becoming a Nursing Assistant and eventually a nurse if you want.
5. College of DuPage
The College of DuPage offers a unique learning opportunity through its Operating Room Patient Care Technician program.
As of 2022, the college has begun redesigning this training to meet the needs of Patient Care Technicians (PCT) students who have not yet taken a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) or PCT course.
Patient Care Technician Schools in Illinois – Summary Table
|Carl Sandburg College||2400 Tom L. Wilson Blvd, Galesburg, IL 61401|
|The City College of Chicago||180 N. Wabash, Suite 200 Chicago, Il 60601|
|Black Hawk College||6600 34th Ave, Moline, IL 61265|
|South Suburban College (SSC)||15800 State St, South Holland, IL 60473|
|College of DuPage||425 Fawell Blvd. Glen Ellyn, IL|
An Illinois Patient Care Technician can make an average of $36,632.
The earnings for PCTs typically range from $31,912 to $40,963.
If you stack your certificates, it could place you in a yearly salary range of $45,000 per year or more.Annual Salary Range: Annual Salary by Location:
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
Regional Salary in Illinois
|Region||Employed||Avg. Annual Salary||Avg. Hourly Pay||Top 10% Annual Salary||Bottom 10% Annual Salary|
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the requirements to become a Patient Care Technician in Illinois?
To become a Patient Care Technician in Illinois, you must at least have a high school diploma or equivalent.
You can start work assisting other medical staff right away, but it is best if you enroll in an accredited training program while working.
Make sure the training you receive prepares you for your CPCT/A certification exam.
If you also want to become a CNA or other certified nurse, you must also register with the state of Illinois.
How long does it take to become a Patient Care Technician in Illinois?
PCT training usually takes between 6-12 months or less to complete the entry-level training program and become certified.
To earn advanced credentials, you may end up in school for at least three semesters.
The education required for an associate degree usually takes you about two years.
How much does it cost to become a Patient Care Technician in Illinois?
The cost of becoming a Patient Care Technician in Illinois varies, but for one semester it may run about $5,000, including the equipment and supplies required for your clinical training.