Review the job duties of medication aides, and find out what training is needed for this position. Explore what you'd learn in a medication aide training program.
Medication aides work in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Working as a medication aide, your primary responsibility is providing routine medications to facility residents. In some states, you might also work in care settings for the mentally challenged or in correctional facilities. Your training can range from 75 to 140 hours, and upon training completion, you will typically work under the supervision of nurses.
If you're interested in becoming a medication aide, you should possess proficient verbal and written skills, have knowledge of the English language and be in good mental and physical health. Additionally, you should also be free of any communicable illnesses. As of October 26, 2011, Payscale.com reported that the salary for medication aides ranged from $17,569-$30,413, annually. Payscale.com also listed job titles related to medication aide, including nursing aide, orderly and medical attendant.
Medication aide programs are typically offered through community colleges. Some colleges offer Certified Medication Aide or online medication aide programs. Throughout your training program, you'll become familiar with advancements in medicine, medication dispensing practices, outcomes of using different medications and medication interactions. You'll also learn about the safety measures required when handling and storing medications.
If you want to enroll in a medication aide program, you should be at least 18 years of age and possess a minimum of a high school education. Some schools also require you to be certified in a related healthcare position, such as a Certified Nurse Aide before applying. In place of such credentials, some schools might allow prior work experience to suffice for program admittance.
As a graduate of a medication aide program, you'll be able to take vital statistics, document resident records, administer oxygen and apply different types of medications to various parts of the body. You'll have the skills to communicate with residents effectively and demonstrate compassion. You'll also be able to determine the physical and mental needs of residents. Some states might require you to be licensed as a certified or qualified medication aide, which includes passing a state exam, before you can qualify for employment.