Not everyone is cut out to work with patients in need of care.
It can be a tough job that can take a heavy toll on someone who is not properly prepared to take on such a role.
But for those who are moved to help people, a Patient Care Technician might be a calling.
Being an advocate for those getting care while working closely with doctors and nurses helps keep a medical facility running smoothly and patients heard.
Article Table of Contents
- 1 Licensing Requirements to Become a Patient Care Technician
- 2 5 Patient Care Technician Schools in Texas
- 3 Salary
- 4 Sources
- 5 Frequently Asked Questions
Licensing Requirements to Become a Patient Care Technician
Before we talk about what is required, let’s get a solid understanding of what a career as a patient care technician would look like.
To start with, a PCT’s main function is being part of the support staff.
A large part of that support is focused on nurses and doctors who are treating patients’ physical and/or mental health.
- Taking specimen samples
- Staying up to date on heart rate, blood pressure, and pulse
- Regular check-ups on a patient’s condition
- Keeping records of nutritional and fluid intake
- Delivering patients for imaging procedures
- Being what the patient needs to ensure top-notch care
Some PCTs work in hospitals, others in senior care facilities or other assisted living facilities.
One thing is for sure, there is a demand for more workers in the field and the experience provides solid job security.
In order to start a career, what are the requirements?
While there are no licenses, you must be certified to be a patient care technician.
To get certified, students must complete an accredited course that will make them eligible to take the Nurse Assistant Competency exam (NACES), the American Certification Association exam for PCTs and exams for ECG technicians and phlebotomy technicians.
Once the tests have been passed, and you’re officially a certified patient care tech, you will need to renew the certification every two years.
Below we will share some schools in Texas where you can get your certification and compare tuition costs.
Prospective PCTs will also need a high school diploma or equivalency, a clean criminal background, be drug-free, have a CPR certification, and be up to date on immunizations and flu shots.
5 Patient Care Technician Schools in Texas
South Texas College
STC offers a certificate program that requires 16 credits to graduate.
The program covers working with infants, children, adults, and the elderly who are in need.
They teach all about the field of care from physical, mental, and emotional perspectives.
Also included is an Alzheimer’s certificate.
Upon graduating, students will have to take exams for PCT, phlebotomy, and EKG machines.
Program tuition is $1,232.
This online program has no prerequisites, so you can start taking it whenever you are ready.
Students have up to a year to complete the program.
Emphasis is placed on the quality of care as well as how to treat things such as bed sores and improving range of motion.
Tuition is $2,495.
Northeast Texas Community College
At NTCC, they want you to graduate prepared to start a position as a PCT.
They ensure that you are expertly familiar with medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, and all the ebbs and flows of patient care.
The program cost is $2,484 and includes all the testing fees needed at the end, as well as malpractice and insurance fees.
Lone Star College
The program here is hybrid, meaning you will have both in-person and online classes.
It is taught on a fast track, so you can have your certificate in as soon as three weeks.
There will be labs and clinical rotations throughout the program.
Students work closely with medical professionals during their studies.
The cost of tuition is $1,536.
Houston Community College
This in-person program costs $2,607 and makes sure you are ready for things like safety checks, ambulating patients, and understanding patient care supplies.
By the time you graduate, you will have certifications also as a CNA.
Tuition includes lab and testing fees.
Patient Care Technician Schools in Texas – Summary Table
|South Texas College||3201 Pecan Blvd, McAllen, TX 78501|
|Texas State||601 University Dr, San Marcos, TX 78666|
|Northeast Texas Community College||2886 FM1735, Mt Pleasant, TX 75455|
|Lone Star College||4141 Victory Dr, Houston, TX 77088|
|Houston Community College||3100 Main St, Houston, TX 77002|
In the state of Texas, the average salary for a Patient Care Technician is $33,907.
Depending on where in the state you live and other factors, you can expect a salary range to be between $29,538 and $37,916.Annual Salary Range:
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the additional requirements of becoming a patient care tech in Texas?
There are a few qualities that help make someone the perfect fit for the job.
For example, having good stamina, exuding compassion towards others, and being able to pay close attention to detail.
What is the difference between a PCT and a CNA?
On paper, the two positions are very similar.
The goal for both a patient care technician and a certified nurse’s assistant is to ensure the patient has what they need.
The big difference lies in overall responsibilities.
While there is overlap, a PCT performs tasks that require more training, such as EKGs or taking blood.
Can a PCT write prescriptions?
The PCT’s part in medication resides in getting the record of prescriptions from the patient.
At that point, the doctor will put together a treatment plan for moving forward.
The PCT will be available to assist the patient with understanding and taking the medication following the evaluation.
Read the full guide: How to Become a Patient Care Technician