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How to Best Assist Patients with Dementia

Dementia is a terrible and destructive disease, and it can be very difficult to see a loved one suffer from it. Often, it replaces the person you knew with a complete stranger who is struggling to hold onto who they were. As a professional caregiver, you play an important role in helping both patients with dementia and their loved ones cope with this frustrating disease. At ABC Training, we offer medical training programs in NYC to help you gain valuable skills for coping with dementia as a caregiver. Today, we’ll talk a little bit about how you can best assist patients with dementia and their loved ones, even when behavioral issues or challenges present themselves. What Is Dementia? Dementia refers to a series of neurological conditions that result in a continuous decline in mental and social skills over time, typically in the elderly. Both Lewy Body Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are forms of dementia. Patients with dementia struggle to cope with self-care, and many lose short or long-term memory in increasing amounts over time. Dementia hinders the ability to remember facts, words, and recent events, and may impact a patient’s ability to communicate effectively, think clearly, and grasp reality. The afflicted person sometimes experiences mood swings and drastic changes in personality, but this isn’t always true for every individual. Patients may have brief moments of clarity and composure, but they are often short-lived and quickly forgotten, especially in the advanced disease. Disruption in mental functions and socialization abilities eventually make it impossible for the patient to stay safe and well. Being Rational Is Not the Best Choice When dealing... read more

Coping with the End of Patient Lives

Dealing with terminally ill patients is a delicate situation that comes with many challenges. All patients (and sometimes, their families) have their own individual ways of coping, and no two patients necessarily have the same preferences for end-of-life care. There is no clear-cut formula on how to handle every patient in this position, but guidelines do exist. The compassionate tips in this guide will help you ease suffering and cope with end-of-life care to the best of your ability. Be Sensitive to Their Emotions It’s unfair to tell anyone how they should feel about anything. This is particularly the case at the end of a patient’s life. Hospice is often their final opportunity to explore emotions that have been building up over their entire life. All of their feelings are valid, regardless of whether they’re negative, positive, or laissez-faire. To the highest possible degree, allow the patient to experience their emotions, but learn how to bring them back down if their emotions become too much. Crisis intervention in hospice is very different from everyday crisis intervention; don’t be afraid to seek training or guidance if you need it. Your goal is a delicate balance between easing their suffering and treating them like another patient. Anxiety is a common emotion in hospice, especially early in the process. If the patient doesn’t have friends or family around for emotional support, expect anxieties to be higher. Everyone has different emotional needs; it’s up to you to find a balance between being there for them and treating their condition. Your patient may show anger, sadness, or both at some point in the process.... read more

How to Get a Clear Read on an EKG

The EKG, also known as the electrocardiogram, is a vital tool that all medical professionals must know how to use. The ability to obtain a clear read on an EKG allows physicians to make an accurate diagnosis and administer effective treatment. The basics below are only the beginning of what EKG training in NYC covers. Electrode Site Preparation In order for the EKG to be able to obtain an accurate reading, its electrodes must be able to conduct as much electricity as possible. However, the skin itself can make this difficult; not only is the skin a poor conductor of electricity, but physical features can also interfere. Oily skin, perspiration, and excess hair can all result in poor electrode operation, so wiping the site with a skin prep wipe can help. It’s also a good idea to apply more conductive gel to the electrode. Optimal Areas for Electrode Placement There are several areas which are considered to be optimal for the obtaining of a clear EKG read. The chest is typically the ideal spot, as it will provide the clearest and most reliable signals. The electrodes are usually placed near the insides of each shoulder and at the solar plexus. However, these placements may vary by patient. Electrodes can also be placed on the patient’s limbs, either on both wrists or the wrists and leg. These locations are considered to be viable placements because the limbs are the body’s electrical extensions. However, these areas are also more susceptible to movement artifact. Eliminating Artifact A well-recorded EKG will contain R and S spikes that are large enough for the machine... read more

Are You Too Old to Attend Medical School?

You may have always wanted to obtain medical training and certification with a career training program in NYC, but, now that you’re older, you may not be sure about beginning your career. If so, you are not alone; many face the stubborn mental block of “age insecurity.” The great news is that the idea that one is too old to follow their dreams is just that—an idea. The Benefits of Going Back The older we get, the more life experience we obtain. This can really benefit your return to the medical field, helping you to tackle and solve problems as well as deal with failure. Both of these things will make you better in your chosen field. Not only that, but the life experience you’ve gained will also help you to maintain efficiency and stay organized in high-pressure situations, which is a very valuable skill to possess in the medical field. Commitment is absolutely essential for medical students of any age. However, as an older student, you have gained a deeper understanding of commitment. This is something which will help you immensely as you begin your multi-year education and training. Your life experiences include the management of finances—a skill you will definitely need as an older student. Your financial skills will allow you to formulate a solid strategy for the repayment of any student loans, as well as help ensure that current financial obligations can continue to be met. Fulfillment There may be many reasons why you wish to attend medical school, but one thing’s for sure: Your career will reward you with much fulfillment, both as you work... read more

How Medical Training Can Help Other Aspects of Your Life

When some people look into medical assistant schools in NYC, they do so because they want a career that is stable, and in a field that piques their interest. What many do not consider is how medical assistant training can transform your life outside of the classroom. Helping people can be intrinsically rewarding. Studying to be a medical assistant in NYC lines you up for a job where you are helping people, whether it be taking vitals or managing the flow of the front desk. Being able to interact with patients young and old who are struggling with a myriad of things makes you go home at night feeling like your day at work made a difference in someone’s life. Having a job that is rewarding contributes to your overall happiness as well. You will develop interpersonal and administrative skills. Throughout your medical assistant training in NYC, you will have the chance to interact with teachers and other students, as well as doctors, nurses, surgeons, and patients throughout your externship and future career. Interacting with such a variety of people gives you the polish and decorum you need to be a successful communicator in life. As a medical assistant, you will likely be organizing files and handling phone calls and charts for doctors. Being able to master juggle all of these tasks simultaneously equips you with the tools to thrive in an administrative role in any field. You will improve your time management skills. If you are like many people studying to become a medical assistant, you have an entire life outside of school already. Many work full-time jobs... read more

Six Reasons Medical Assisting Is a Fun, Rewarding Career

You’re going to spend at least eight hours a day, 40 hours a week working. That’s a big chunk of time to be miserable if you hate your job. If you’re considering a new career, medical assisting offers a challenging, exciting, and fun opportunity for adults seeking something more than just a job. Medical assistants provide many services to hospitals and doctors’ offices, including administrative and marketing work, as well as some basic medical tasks such as taking patients’ vital signs. Medical assisting training in NY can help you get certified and in the job market in just a few months. Here are a few reasons why medical assisting may be the right occupation for you: Geographic choice – Medical assistants are in demand throughout the country, and you can take a certification exam that is recognized across the country. For folks who want to travel or who want to maximize their earnings by moving to a part of the country with higher wages, medical assisting is an excellent career choice. Work with a team – Medical assisting is a highly social job. You’ll work with doctors, nurses, administrative staff, patients, and vendors. If working with others energizes you, medical assisting is the job for you. Job security – The health care industry is booming, with an aging population and a growing range of services offered by physicians driving increased demand for medical workers. The health care industry is predicted to expand employment opportunities by 2.3 million jobs over the next decade. Experts predict medical assisting jobs will grow 23 percent in this period. The growth in employment means... read more

Different Career Paths for Medical Assistants

After completing your medical assistant training program in NYC at ABC Training Center, you have several different potential career paths you could follow. Medical Assistant (MA) tasks consist of a wide array of services, including: Office Administration Coding and Billing Appointment Scheduling Records Keeping Patient Care Laboratory Services Scheduling Performing EKGs/ECGs Taking Vital Signs Simple Lab Tests Blood Draws Exam Room Preparation Assisting Doctors During Examinations Patient Exam Preparation In addition, there could be other specific types of tasks and services an MA provides, depending upon the clinical environment where they work. As such, this allows MAs the flexibility to specialize in various careers to further the initial training. Some MAs choose to become registered or certified Mas, as having this distinction often helps open up more potential career paths and potentially higher salaries. In addition, some medical practices prefer to hire certified or registered MAs, even though there are no specific state requirements stating an MA must be certified or registered. The three general career paths most MAs initially choose from are: Administrative MA – An administrative MA is responsible for the business side of a medical practice. With the right training, they could even advance to become the medical office manager or hospital administrative manager, where they will oversee all of the day-to-day business operations, such as coding, billing, patient scheduling, staffing, and so on. Clinical MA – A clinical MA works alongside other physicians, nurses, and other medical professionals. Their primary function is to provide quality medical care for patients. They may be required to take vitals, record medical histories on patients’ records, and provide patient... read more

The Difference Between Certified Professional Coders and Medical Billing and Coding Professionals

If a career in the medical field sounds interesting, but you want to work in a career that provides support services for patients, medical centers, and physicians, two possible career paths are either a certified professional coder (CPC) or a medical billing and coding professional. There are key distinctions between the two careers you should understand, so you can choose the right career path. Certified Professional Coder As you might guess, a CPC is a certified professional coder. The certification is necessary because a professional coder will be assigning specific medical codes to office procedures, lab tests, and other such medical services. It is important that the code is accurate and correct in order to ensure the medical practice receives the proper reimbursement from insurance companies. Part of your coding courses program at ABC Training requires learning thousands of different codes and disease classifications. The three most common types of codes used in the medical industry a coder must be aware of and have knowledge of include: ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases) – This is the international standard of coding used for diagnosis and procedural codes. CPT (Current Procedural Terminology) – This set of codes consists of the more commonly used ones in most medical practices for outpatient and medical office procedures. HCPCS (Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System) – These codes specifically apply to medical services, supplies, and treatments for patients that have either Medicare and/or Medicaid. CPCs must also have the ability to look at a medical diagnoses and patient services’ forms to determine which type of codes to assign before submitting them to the practice’s billing department.... read more

The Psychology Behind Helping People: Why It Makes for a Great Career

Choosing a career is, essentially, a significant life event; it is one of the most important choices you are likely to make in your lifetime. Most of those who are asked why they chose a career in the medical field will say they did so because they wanted to make a difference by helping people. However, choosing a career of helping others also has several benefits for professionals. Connections Human connection is vital; from the first moment of birth, it makes for a healthy start by strengthening our immune systems and providing us with an emotional foothold. Medical careers provide human connection, allowing professionals to impact the lives of community members directly. Those working in the medical field touch thousands of lives every day; they save and change lives, and welcome new ones into the world. Medical professionals impact communities with various forms of healthcare and disease treatment, and bring comfort to those in need. Mental and Physical Benefits A medical career offers many benefits to mental and physical health. Numerous studies have shown how helping others affects our bodies, brains, and overall well-being. Movement Medical professionals are constantly on the move, visiting patients, administering treatments, and providing needed support. A medical professional may walk several miles in a day, which provides the physical activity needed to help prevent the development of illnesses like heart disease and high blood pressure. Prevention of Depression The constant connection that a NYC home health aide enjoys with others helps them to develop a reliable support system which can help prevent and fight depression. These meaningful relationships provide medical professionals with a sense... read more

Everything You Want to Know About Being a Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy technicians are members of one of the fastest-growing careers in the world. With the ever-increasing demand for healthcare (and for the resulting prescriptions), pharmacy work continues to be one of the most lucrative opportunities in modern times. Here, we’ll go over everything you want to know about working as a professional pharmacy technician. What Does a Pharmacy Technician Do? Pharmacy technicians are medical professionals that work under a pharmacist and perform a variety of duties, including dispensing medications per prescription instructions, dealing with patients’ insurance and payment, entering data into pharmacy computer systems, organizing medication inventory, and more. Technicians can work in a variety of settings, including hospital/clinic pharmacies, chain pharmacies (like CVS and Walgreens), nursing homes, prisons, and etc. How Much Will I Make? According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for pharmacy technicians in 2015 was $30,410 per year ($14.62 per hour).¹ Depending on where you work and what your hours are, you can expect some variation in this level of pay. In general, those who hold some kind of professional pharmacy tech certification earn more money in the position than those who do not. What Are the Hours? Hours are generally quite flexible and are set based on the specific pharmacy’s needs and hours. Technicians can work either full- or part-time, as desired, which makes it a great career for those who require some time during the day/week to care for young children. Those who prefer to work a late or overnight shift can also find a suitable position at a 24-hour pharmacy or emergency clinic.  How Do... read more

The Rise of the Pharmacy Technician

There are dozens of careers in the field of healthcare: patient-facing positions like those of physicians and nurses, administrative positions like medical coding and clinic administration, and medication-based positions like those of pharmacists and pharmaceutical salespersons. With so many options, it can be hard to choose the one that’s right for you. If you have an interest in a fast-paced, constantly-growing career working with medications but aren’t interested in the potentially long, costly education involved in becoming a pharmacist, a job as a pharmacy technician could be the perfect option. What Is a Pharmacy Technician? A pharmacy technician is a medical professional who works under a pharmacist providing prescribed medications in either a clinic or outside pharmacy setting. Pharmacy technicians are tasked with dispensing the appropriate amount of medications, transcribing prescriptions into computer systems, making sales, organizing and stocking pharmacy shelves, and other various administrative tasks. Unlike pharmacists, pharmacy technicians are not allowed to make determinations regarding medication interactions or verify that the dosage is accurate. Pharmacists also generally take on pharmacy tasks that require a higher level of authority, such as verifying that the pharmacy technician has filled a medication correctly, discussing symptoms and medication usage with patients, and referring patients to doctors. Even so, pharmacy technicians are required to become familiar with prescription shorthand, as well as the names and uses for dozens of medications. A Fast-Growing Career Path Over the last several years, the pharmacy field has continued to grow—especially in the realm of pharmacy technicians. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook, the expected growth rate for jobs in the pharmacy technician... read more

Why Medical Careers Are the Most Rewarding Careers

In today’s fast-paced, constantly-changing world, it’s important to have a stable career that you can rely on for financial income and personal happiness. For many, however, it can be tough to decide what to study and where to put one’s efforts. If you’re struggling to decide which career path to choose, have you ever considered pursuing a career in the field of medicine? If you have a desire to help people and have a reliable, enjoyable career, the medical field could be just the right choice for you. Take a look at a few great reasons why medical careers are some of the most satisfying, rewarding careers a person can have. Guaranteed Job Security Doctors, nurses, hospital administrators, medical coders, pharmacy technicians, and other medical professionals are needed worldwide, and the demand isn’t likely to stop anytime soon. With such a constant need for healthcare and ever-changing regulatory standards, a wide variety of medical professionals can rest assured that they will be able to find and keep a job wherever they go in the world. Great Pay and Convenient Benefits One of the best perks of a career in the medical field is the decent amount of money that can be made and the fantastic benefits involved. Medical jobs—even those that happen entirely behind a desk—start at well above minimum wage, and the opportunities for growth and promotion are plentiful. If you decide at any point in your career that you’d like to shift gears and try something different, you can always pursue additional education and/or certification to take you to where you want to be. A medical coder,... read more

Phlebotomy Guidelines & Best Practices

Phlebotomists cannot simply call a patient back and start taking their blood immediately. There are guidelines and safe practices they need to follow to ensure the procedure goes smoothly and is safe for everyone involved. The EKG and phlebotomy training in NYC classes from the ABC Training Center helps you prepare to meet these guidelines so you can handle your job well. Read on to learn about guidelines related to this emerging field. Pre-Planning You need to perform some pre-planning before starting any procedures. The first step is to find a clean, well-lit area where you can see what you are doing. You also need all supplies readily available. The list of supplies includes non-sterile gloves, disposable needles, an alcohol rub, and syringes. It is ideal to keep a full set of supplies in the room where you’re working so you can handle one patient after the other without the need to stop and find more supplies. Order of Draw There may be times when you have to take multiple samples. You do not simply start drawing blood from any location and fill any tube. There is a particular order of draw to follow. SPS blood cultures get taken first, followed by the red glass tubes. You then fill the Sodium Citrate Blue, followed by the serum tubes with clot activators. Sodium or Lithium Heparin comes in green, while EDTA comes in pink or purple. Follow these with the gray containers, and then use the Yellow ACD. Your paperwork should divulge which samples are required and indicate the proper order of draw to use. Patient Care You need to... read more

Reasons to Consider a Career as a Medical Assistant

Are you unhappy with your current career? Have you just graduated but aren’t certain what you’d like to pursue? Do you have an interest in the healthcare industry? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you might want to consider a career as a Medical Assistant! A medical assistant is a healthcare professional (usually working in a clinic) who does the more routine tasks of medicine, including taking a patient’s vitals (temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, height, weight, etc.), giving injections, administering medications, keeping medical records, preparing medical supplies and instruments, and collecting fluid and tissue samples. Here are seven great reasons to get involved in this constantly growing field: You Get to Make an Impact Through Medicine There’s nothing more satisfying than knowing that your care and expertise have made a valuable impact on a patient’s health and life. You’ll be doing a service to society by helping people get well and stay well. There’s a Relatively Short Training Period Unlike other medical programs (and even non-medical ones), the training time required for medical assisting is only about 9 months. At ABC Training Center in the Bronx NY, you can train in as little as 6 months. You can be licensed and working in under a year! Medical Assisting Offers Plenty of Room to Grow Looking for a career that allows you to move up instead of just laterally? Medical assisting affords plenty of opportunities to climb the healthcare professional ladder. Additional training can even move you into careers in nursing or office management, should you so choose. You Won’t Have a Hard Time Finding Employment In today’s... read more

Forward-Thinking People Thrive in Home Health Aide Careers

Home health aides head to their client’s houses to provide health services, including physical therapy, medication management, and vital sign checks. The job requires forward-thinking people who are able to come up with solutions quickly and think on their feet in the event of an emergency situation. If you are a forward thinker, you should consider a career in home health, started by looking into medical training programs in NYC. Situations That Require Forward Thinkers Working with clients in a medical capacity is sure to bring up unexpected situations. Here’s an example: Your patient is suffering from a bronchial attack. You need to think on your feet to ensure you can come up with a solution to best help them in their time of need. You must decide how to help immediately to get fast results. You might grab a humidifier and turn it on. You could also run to your vehicle to get an Albuterol treatment. Making a cup of tea and honey could even help. These are all valid choices. As long as you think of something quick, you are offering a helpful solution to assist your patient. When working in the medical field, you can’t always wait for someone else to handle the problem. Other Necessary Skills Being forward thinking is not the only skill you need as a home health aide. These careers require a great deal of knowledge and talent. Just because you can think and act quickly does not mean you have the compassion and communication skills needed to work closely with patients. You should always show compassion in the way you speak... read more

Why Is Medical Assisting a Growing Career?

Considering a shift in career to the healthcare industry, but aren’t sure where to begin? You could attend medical college or even become a nurse, but medical assisting just might get you in and involved faster than ever. This quickly-growing niche expands rapidly each year. Future career projections show a distinct and continuous upswing in job availability, stability, and salary. The field of medical assisting itself is also varied and diverse, with those who choose the career getting to experience tasks ranging from direct patient care to assisting with minor procedures. However, what makes this field so suitable and special, and why are medical training programs in NYC gaining popularity? Become Certified Faster Unlike becoming a doctor or nurse, the academic path to becoming a Medical Assistant is far shorter and much less demanding of your time. Although you can expect to spend approximately 900 hours in the classroom and an additional 30 hours interning, you can complete most courses in just one or two years. Some facilities also offer Medical Assistant courses at night so you can continue to work and support a family while you learn. This makes getting an education far easier on both financial and family resources, regardless of your age or situation. An Aging Population Requires More Care An aging population naturally requires more senior and end-of-life care. As the baby boomers reach their senior years, their care needs often increase. By becoming a Medical Assistant, you can play a distinctly important role in their ability to access compassionate, reliable care at all times. The aging population also benefits your career path in another... read more

The Medical Billing and Coding Process Is Directly Related to a Practice’s Revenue Cycle

During your career training program, in NYC or your local area, to become a medical billing and coding specialist you learned a great deal about what processes are needed to code and bill medical claims on behalf of a practice’s patients. However, what your courses may not have covered in great detail was how vital your position actually is as it is directly related to the amount of revenue earned by the practice. Doctors, healthcare facilities, and clinics rely upon the insurance payments and patient co-pays to earn revenue for the operation and to pay their staff. In some cases, smaller hospitals will also find their primary revenue streams come from the money they collect from insurance companies and patients. If coding and billing processes are not going smoothly and taking a long time to complete, the amount of revenue coming in will decline and could create financial concerns for the business. In order to ensure proper processing of claims, medical billing and coding specialists need to understand the revenue cycle concept. This concept is the amount of time it takes to process a claim and receive payment. Ideally, most healthcare offices and facilities want timely processing so that they can typically receive payments within 30 days or less of providing patient services. In order to help facilitate this goal and keep the operation running, coding and billing technicians should remember to use the following guidelines: Manage the entire claim process for every claim at every stage. Simply coding the claim and filing it with the insurance company is not enough; there could be issues with some claims. Promptly... read more

Six Things You Should Know About Medical Coding and Billing Specialists

One growing career area in the healthcare industry is the demand for medical coding and billing specialists. To meet this demand, vocational and career training schools in NYC and elsewhere have added this curriculum to their medical training programs. While most people might assume they know exactly what this type of career is, others may just be surprised to learn some interesting details about this profession they may not have known. Medical coding and medical billing are two different job functions. It is not uncommon for some working environments to have a medical coder, responsible for coding processes; and a medical biller, responsible for processing insurance claims. In smaller offices, both functions are often performed by the same person. Medical coders review patient information to assign codes. While some healthcare facilities use standardized forms already with pre-assigned codes, it is still the coder’s job to verify this is the correct code. In cases where pre-assigned codes are not used, the coder must look up the code using special software and/or reference books. Medical billers update patient records and perform collection processes. Once insurance companies pay for services, it is the medical biller’s job to update the patient records. In cases where the insurance company does not pay, or there is an outstanding co-pay owed by the patient, the biller must also dispute unpaid charges and collect co-pays. Medical billers and coders are encouraged to join the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). The AAPC is a vital resource for billers and coders, and it offers credentialing opportunities. In addition, according to the AAPC, members with one or more credentials... read more