5 Essential Patient Care Technician Characteristics

Qualities you need to become a PCT

Have you ever considered becoming a valuable member of a healthcare team? Becoming a Patient Care Technician (PCT) may be a career that allows you to blossom and grow. Entering patient care technician school allows you to develop the technical skills and soft skills that you need to be effective in this role.

Patient care technicians are essential to the healthcare industry because they help care for patients who need assistance with every day activities. Throughout the day they might look after patients with disabilities, chronic illnesses, age-related issues, or those in hospice care. Patient care technicians are needed to provide the comfort and care that patients need to make life transitions when their health is failing. A patient care technician can make these changes easier on patients and their families.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook, there are a few essential qualities needed to become a nursing assistant, orderly, or patient care technician.

Consider the following list to see the kinds of traits that make a great patient care technician.

1. Have a kind heart

Kindness and empathy are must-have traits to become a patient care technician. Since you’re there to care for your patients, kindness is a simple and extraordinary way to show your patients that you care. Empathy allows you to understand and connect with your patients. You can more easily understand their perspectives to validate their concerns. You may also be able to assess your patients’ pain more easily so you can be more attentive and aware of their needs. As a healthcare giver, compassion and understanding are very important traits.

2. Strong communication skills

PCTs need to communicate directions, patient status updates, and other healthcare information clearly and efficiently so doctors and nurse practitioners can understand how to give proper care to a patient. Strong interpersonal skills allow you to communicate and build cooperative bonds with patients and their families. When you communicate clearly with your coworkers and patients, you can effectively implement a health care plan and offer efficient care that can help ensure a smoother experience for your patient. Communicating effectively with those around you can also help prevent any further health complications for your patients.

3. Patience

It’s beneficial to be patient when working with patients and coworkers. Maintaining a calm and respectful environment helps make a productive healthcare team and also helps you build trustworthy bonds with patients. Patients with disabilities, patients recovering from surgery, or elderly patients may operate at a slower pace than you are used to, and as a PCT, you needd to have patience. A calm, patient, and professional manner will earn you the trust and admiration of your patients and your co-workers.

4. Physical endurance

Part of your role will be to lift, turn, or transport patients who are disabled, injured, or have trouble moving on their own accord. When considering this position, factor in your energy and strength. Do you think you have the ability to maintain a healthy physicality so you can stay alert and strong every day at work?  This career is an active one and you need to be alert to manage any healthcare emergencies that come your way.

5. Critical thinking skills

As a patient care technician, you are partially responsible for your patients and their care. Critical thinking is needed so you can determine how to help your patients and provide the best care for them. If there is a medical emergency or you need to assess the health status of a patient, you need to use those brain muscles to determine how to offer ethical and responsible caregiving skills. Entering a PCT training program can help expose you to ways to manage and care for patients in emergencies and with everyday skilled nursing care.

Hopefully, this list offers you insight into the skills and roles of patient care technicians. Do you want to develop these skills? Consider entering a patient care technician training program today, so that you may advance your skill set and become a helpful member of the healthcare industry.

The Salter School of Nursing & Allied Health provides a patient care technician training program for students. If you’d like more information on our three nurse training programs or services, contact us today! You may also apply online!

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