Patient Care Technician
Certified patient care technicians/assistants (CPCT/A), commonly known as PCTs, are supervised by doctors and nurses to complete assigned or delegated tasks. PCTs provide compassionate, and effective, patient-centered care to bring comfort to those facing hospitalization, diagnostic tests. Patient Care Technicians may work in a variety of medical settings including hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation facilities or nursing homes.
Patient care technicians provide the same essential hands-on care as nursing assistants (CNAs), but are also trained to proficiently perform phlebotomy and electrocardiography procedures. PCTs are responsible for:
● Assisting with activities of daily living (hygiene, grooming, nutrition, etc.)
● Measuring, and recording patient’s vital signs, height and weight
● Reporting patient symptoms, and changes in condition
● Acquiring, distributing and administering patient care supplies
● Collecting laboratory specimens
● Performing EKG/ECG and phlebotomy procedures
● Providing emotional support to patients and families
● Data collection, and assisting with admissions, transfer, or discharge processes
PCT programs are designed to equip students with the foundational knowledge of and technical competencies in nursing care, phlebotomy and EKG/ECG. Career changers who are completely new to the healthcare field may complete their PCT training within just a few months, with flexible class and payment options available.
Exam and Certifications
Become a certified PCT in 3 easy steps:
1. Complete a New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) accredited nursing aide/assistant program and pass the competency evaluation exam to become a Certified Nursing Aide/Assistant (CNA).
2. Complete courses in phlebotomy and EKG/ECG procedures either separately (60 hours each), or as a combination course (100 hours total).
3. Pass the PCT exam offered by a certification agency to become a Certified Patient Care Technician/Assistant (CPCT/A).
Basic Life Support (BLS) certification is a general requirement for healthcare workers who may need to perform high-quality first aid procedures like cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to sustain or revive individuals in life-threatening emergencies.
Career Outlook for PCTs
It’s an exciting time to launch a career in healthcare, with the employment of nursing assistants (with similar duties to PCTs) projected to grow by 9% between 2018 and 2028 to meet the needs of an aging baby boomer population, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Becoming a PCT is one of the quickest and most affordable ways to join a rapidly expanding industry which also offers great stability, and abundant opportunities for professional advancement.