A new noncredit
program at Mercer, "Direct Health Care Provider,"
will prepare participants in one semester for jobs in the health
care field. According to Linda Martin, MSN, director of Mercer's
Nursing Education program, the state-approved curriculum will ready
students for the certification exam as either a Certified Nursing
Assistant (C.N.A.) or Home Health Aide (H.H.A.).
State certification is required for aides seeking employment in
New Jersey nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospices and
agencies offering home health care services. "County data indicates
a shortage of workers in these areas," Martin said. "This
program will help to fill that gap, as well as give our own nursing
students a chance to gain practical experience in the field while
they study for their degree."
MCCC will partner
with Lawrenceville Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, which will
serve as the clinical site for hands-on training. The program will
start with a maximum of ten students in its pilot semester this
fall, with plans to expand in size and add a training site at Mercer's
James Kerney campus in downtown Trenton.
Johnson has awarded the college $20,000 to equip a lab that will
serve as the program's hub, with items including mannequins, beds,
trays and side tables, as well as a Hoyer lift for patient transport.
"The idea is to furnish the lab so that it looks like a typical
patient room in a nursing home setting," Martin said.
core course, which is required for both certifications, is "Unlicensed
Assistive Personnel." Classes will be held Tuesdays, Aug.
28-Dec. 11, 8 a.m. to 12 noon. Additionally, students may choose
to take "Certified Nursing Assistant," which meets
for three sessions from Oct. 9-Oct. 23, 1-3 p.m.; and/or "Home
Health Aide," which meets for five sessions from Oct. 30-Dec.
4, 1-3 p.m. (Students who take all three classes will be prepared
for both exams.) Among the topics to be covered are patient hygiene,
patient communication, transfer techniques, nutrition, patient safety
and evacuation, and psychosocial issues.
A high school
diploma or GED, and a clear understanding of written and spoken
English are required. All applicants must attend an information
session on Aug. 10, 10 a.m. to noon. For questions or additional
information, call (609) 570-3311 or email ComEd@mccc.edu.
To learn more,
Nursing Degree Program