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Certifications to get for Clinical Jobs in medicine

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Flymm, May 10, 2007.

  1. Flymm

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    So, I graduated this December and have been trying to get a clinical job that pays actual green money, not just volunteering. Apparently, it is ridiculously hard for someone with a college degree to get a job in a hospital that puts you in a clinical capacity without past paying clinical experience or various certifications. So, my question is this: what certification or continuing education courses would serve me best in order to get an actual job in medicine before I go to medical school?
     
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  3. scrubsaresexy

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    Its purely a case of hospitals/health care centers/etc covering their asses. A college degree is nice, but a license is necessary for malpractice and whatnot. You could try something like CNA, phlebotomy, EMT...there's tons of options depending on your interests, what you're willing to pay, and how long you're willing to go to class or community college or whatever to get this job. I would check out what courses your local community college offers and go from there. :luck:
     
  4. Flymm

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    I appreciate the response. If there was one certification which would be most effective which would it be?
     
  5. scrubsaresexy

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    I have absolutely no idea. :D
    I'm taking an EMT crash course this summer, but just because I want to and it's only for volunteer work (for now, anyway), so there's no monetary incentive. I think phlebotomy is one of the shorter classes, and I want to say it pays around $9-$10/hour. CNAs are always needed though.

    I wish someone who had more experience would put in their $0.02
    *hint hint*
     
  6. DrVanNostran

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    I will be taking an EMT-B course this summer. From what I hear, most of the people end up taking patient care tech jobs to start off with then eventually do something else.

    I also heard that getting certified as a CNA is really good.
     
  7. Corndog67

    Corndog67 Second Job=Garden Gnome
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    Technician jobs will probably pay the most such as a echocardiogram tech. Specialized and certified techs can make over 40/hr. Also, some states will give you the appropriate training at the local community colleges for not too much. Unfortunately, CA bites in that the only clinical certification you can get at a cc is the EMT/Paramedic and the classes are freakin expensive.
     
  8. jiggz16

    jiggz16 Junior Member
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    Would it look better to volunteer as an EMT or paid experience?
     
  9. 45408

    45408 aw buddy
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    Um, it doesn't matter. Why would it? Get paid if at all possible.
     
  10. DoctorPardi

    DoctorPardi In Memory of Riley Jane
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    Think about where you want to work. EMT = ER, ambulance, fire department. CNA= ER, nursing home, floor, possibly OR. Phlebotomy= lab, ER etc

    So as you can see almost any of them let you in the ER, but there are differences. As an EMT-B or CNA in ER your job will probably be very similar, ie Patient Care Tech. As an EMT-B you might be more likely to be allowed to do compressions during CPR of arrest victims or something like that however.

    Also I think CNA is not so much meant for ER and floor work. Many of the employers who really want CNAs are nursing homes. So if you want to work at a nursing home, or are interested in geriatrics then this is the thing for you for sure.

    Phlebotomy is cool because you'll be good at sticking people before your first day of clinicals. Not that it will help you that much, but it is nice to be confident in what you're doing.

    If you want a job in surgery you'll likely need to get a scrub tech certification which would likely take 12-18 months. I am not really sure if there is any reliable way to get a Patient Care Tech position in surgery.
     
  11. Tired

    Tired Fading away
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    CNAs are hired all over the hospital, including the floor and EDs. Check job listing in your area to ensure that the certification is acceptable for the job you apply for. However, I worked in both those areas as a CNA, and never had a problem getting a job. 6 weeks of training, take the state exam, and there you are.
     
  12. kypdurron5

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    On this point....three months ago I saw a listing on a hospital web site for "Cardiac Technician" that didn't mention a need for EKG tech training. In the mean time I took a 3 week CNA course that finished on Friday, and while I was doing that I interviewed for the EKG tech position. It turns out they train, and as a PRN employee it's $12/hr. I'm sure that having gone through EKG tech training in advance would have helped as I was applying, but in this case my bachelor's degree and pre-med status was enough to get in the door. Pretty much everything else requires at least CNA/EMT certification (in Tennessee). So, my plan is to do this EKG tech job PRN, and then perhaps find another CNA (patient care) PRN position so I can get double the exposure in the same block of time. I really think PRN is the way to go because it's flexible; but it all depends on whether you need money or experience the most. For me it's definitely experience.

    Oh, and my CNA course was only $420 (which was a lot better than the CC course at $1,200)...so just shop around.
     
  13. apnea

    apnea Forgot the safe word...
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    There is no amount of money in the world that could make me do CNA work again.

    Phlebotomy is good. Decent enough money and you're not changing diapers.
     
  14. kypdurron5

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    True, but it's a completely different type of clinical experience. It's all about what you need most for your application.
     
  15. brianmartin

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    Don't be a CNA.

    You could get an EMT-B, do some volunteer riding for a while, then try for an ER tech position, I think they like it when you have EMT training.
     
  16. kypdurron5

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    Yes, this is a great opportunity....IF your state has EMT-B >). Mine doesn't, and the next step for EMT requires a full year's worth of classes.
     
  17. apnea

    apnea Forgot the safe word...
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    Also really good point.

    Just...really don't be a CNA. All you do is run around and take vitals all day, it's hardly clinical exposure.
     
  18. Flymm

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    So I was thinking since I am interested in emergency medicine I am going to get my EMT training. Unfortunately, when I checked the Austin, TX Community College it was 11 weeks. Are there other places to get certified in a shorter amount of time? My friend got it in 2 weeks in California. Anyone know of other places to go (Devry, Phoenix College, etc.)
     
  19. kypdurron5

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    Lol, my experience was "I live to change dirty diapers." I haven't had to take vitals more than once or twice thus far. I guess it depends where you work; nursing homes are the least favorable, but will get you undeniable "hands-on clinical exposure" that looks good on an application (but smells horrible ;)). I say that if you can deal with that plus all kinds of fluid discharge, bed sores, perineal care, etc...you really can't have someone tell you that you won't make it in this field (at least not due to the "ick" factor).
     
  20. kypdurron5

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    You have to check the course description and your state requirements. 2 weeks sounds like EMT-B, 11 weeks sounds like EMT-IV (or other such designation above EMT-B). The shortest course I found was through an add in the newspaper classifieds...there's a whole section for medical jobs/training.
     
  21. apnea

    apnea Forgot the safe word...
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    i survived my clinical dates and never wrote my CNA exam. i couldn't handle it. It was all diapers and vital signs, and i worked in the alzheimer's ward so i frequently got soiled briefs thrown at me. Or full mouth kisses from old men who thought i was their wife. But it was mostly diapers. And they're so fragile, it was like handling a 90 pound bag of eggs.
     
  22. kypdurron5

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    The Alzheimer's ward was my absolute favorite! Aside from one woman who said "Hey honey. I love you." every 15 seconds, it was all about keeping them from getting into things they shouldn't have been into >). I also preferred them because most were ambulatory; I think it's much easier to change a diaper on a standing patient than on a bed-ridden one.
     
  23. laurenem

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    I graduated w/ my premed degree and an EMT-B certification. If you find a small private practice that'll give you a chance, you can start there at the front desk and work your way up to be a medical assistant.. that's what I did (they started me as a hybrid MA/receptionist). Hospitals and large offices won't want to take the risk on you without a Medical Assistant Certification (at least an 8 month program from what I've seen) so really look for the small private practices. Being an MA is AMAZING clinical experience. (fyi, my EMT certification helped a lot to get that job) If you're going to go the EMT route, most paid positions for unexperienced EMT's are going to be inter-facility transport--aka glorified taxi driver. I suggest getting experience as a volunteer first at your fire department and then you can work your way up to being paid. It took me 6 months to find a job after I graduated so don't get too frustrated!!
     
  24. 45408

    45408 aw buddy
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    I know a guy who works in a cardiac cath lab with electrophysiologists (cards + fellowship), and all he had was an EMT-B. It's a full-time job though, and he's not interested in going to med school.
     

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