For 19 certified nursing assistants (CNAs) from Isabella Nursing Home, April 6 was the beginning of a new career path. There were tears of joy and loud applause as these CNAs found out that they all successfully completed and graduated from a new Patient Care Technician (PCT) Training program.

The program, which focused on providing the CNAs with a greater skill set to improve the overall quality of care for residents, was part of a collaboration between 1199SEIU League Training and Upgrading Fund and Hostos Community College. Isabella’s Labor-Management Committee was instrumental in working out the details for participation in the program.

During the intensive 16-week training, the CNAs received training in phlebotomy, electrocardiogram (EKG) and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). CNA Milagros de Santa said that her experience being a part of the program was rewarding, but definitely not an easy task to accomplish.“It was a lot of hard work. We were all working full-time and some of us were dealing with family issues as well. We assisted each other throughout the program,” she says.

The CNAs all look forward to being placed in their new positions this spring and using their new skills to provide excellent care to residents at Isabella Nursing Home.

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