Dialysis Technician Training in Colorado

 

Working with someone’s kidneys thru the dialysis procedure is obviously a hazardous endeavor.  Because of this, the state of Colorado has developed a coordinated effort over the last few years to make certain that dialysis technicians (and potential dialysis technicians) are sufficiently trained to alleviate some of the risks associated the dialysis procedure.  For example, the requirement of dialysis techs to be nationally certified helps to ensure that techs are competent.  Also, enlisting the dialysis technicians to work under an RN (registered nurse) should provide even a greater level of comfort for dialysis patients should a problem occur during a dialysis treatment.

Currently, there are over 60 Dialysis technician training programs in Colorado as of 2010, and the average training cost to complete a required training program runs right around $1,900.  There are now over 400 dialysis technicians in the state of Colorado.

The state of Colorado defines a dialysis technician as “any person who provides direct care to dialysis patients and who is not a physician or a registered nurse”.  I think that about sums it up.  Most common duties of a dialysis tech include asking questions and recording information regarding the patient’s vital signs before the dialysis process begins, during the dialysis process and after the dialysis process has ended.  It also includes continually observing and continually assessing the dialysis treatment.  Also, some dialysis patients want to be educated on home-dialysis information and it is generally part of a tech’s responsibility to help train them thru the process.

Under U.S. Federal law, dialysis techs must be certified via a nationally-known certification process or thru a state authorized process.   But this same Federal law allows 18 months after being hired for the certification process to be completed.  So in the state of Colorado, you’ll need to begin the process of becoming certified right after being hired as a dialysis patient technician.

Colorado does not offer a Colorado specific certification.  Instead you will want to become certified via one of three certification programs.

  • The Nephrology Nursing Certification Commission offers a Certified Clinical Hemodialysis Technician, or CCHT.
  • An examination offered by the Board of Nephrology Examiners for Nursing and Technology (CHT Examination).
  • An examination offered by the National Nephrology Certification Organization.

To be able to take any of these exams you will first have to have a high school diploma or GED and will have also had to complete one of the training programs available in the state of Colorado, or satisfied an experience requirement equivalent to a specific training program.  Also, all three of the above exam types will offer you the ability to take the test across various cities in Colorado.  The exams are multiple-choice and will include about 200 questions with a 3-hour time limit.  Also, the cost of the exams are very similar – $200 to $250.

Generally, dialysis clinics will offer some sort of training programs right on the premises.  Programs are also about 3 months long and include both a clinical module and a lecturing module as well.

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