What Does a Patient Care Technician Do?

NursingApril 20, 2017

Those who want to work in the medical profession have a number of career options besides being a doctor or nurse. One of those is Patient Care Technician or PCT – often also called a hospital or patient care assistants or orderlies.

What is a patient care technician? Well, they often are confused with medical assistants or nurse assistants because they share similar duties. A medical assistant is more of a jack-of-all-trades because they perform both clinical and administrative jobs. And, while PCTs and nurse assistants both help nurses (and doctors), PCTs also are trained to perform additional medical jobs, such as ECG and EKG readings and drawing blood.

Patient Care Technician Responsibilities

Basically, patient care technicians provide medical care for patients in hospitals, nursing homes, and doctor’s offices while under the supervision of a doctor or nurse. They also perform tasks patients are unable to do themselves, such as helping patients walk, perform range-of-motion exercises, dress or bathe, and feeding them when necessary.

They also assist in basic medical procedures. PCTs check blood pressure, heart rate, and pulse, monitor food intake, oversee patient medications, help sterilize patient rooms when necessary, ensure bedridden patients don’t suffer from bedsores, and accompany patients to x-ray rooms, among other duties.

Patient care technicians are important members of any healthcare team and have ongoing opportunities to make a difference in the lives of their patients. The profession is in high demand. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), patient care technicians can expect 17% job growth through 2024, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.

Patient Technician Training

The extent of training required to work as a patient care technician may vary by state; however, as a rule, PCT applicants must have a high school diploma or GED and satisfactorily complete at least one year of post-secondary education. Some previous healthcare experience also is helpful.

Patient care technician is an excellent career choice for those who are interested in getting into the medical field and are compassionate, kind, and like helping people. If you are looking to start a career as a Patient Care Technician, Fortis Institute in Scranton, PA, offers educational training in the profession. Learn more by visiting our site or calling the campus (570-558-1818) today!