Patient Care Technician (PCT)

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Patient Care Technician (PCT)

What is a Patient Care Technician (PCT) ?

A Patient Care Technician (PCT) is a healthcare professional who provides direct care and support services to patients under the supervision of a registered nurse (RN) or licensed practical nurse (LPN). PCTs work in various healthcare settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers.

What are the Duties and Responsibilities of a Patient Care Technician (PCT) ?

  1. Basic Patient Care: PCTs assist patients with activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing, grooming, dressing, and toileting, similar to the responsibilities of a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA).
  2. Vital Signs Monitoring: PCTs are responsible for monitoring and recording patients’ vital signs, such as temperature, blood pressure, pulse rate, and respiration rate.
  3. Specimen Collection: PCTs may collect specimens like blood, urine, or stool for laboratory testing.
  4. Phlebotomy and EKG: Some PCTs receive additional training in phlebotomy and electrocardiogram (EKG) procedures, allowing them to draw blood samples and perform basic EKG tests.
  5. Wound Care: PCTs may assist with basic wound care, such as cleaning and dressing wounds and changing bandages.
  6. Infection Control: PCTs must follow strict infection control protocols to prevent the spread of infections among patients and staff.
  7. Mobility Assistance: PCTs help patients with mobility, such as transferring from a bed to a chair, repositioning in bed, or assisting with walking.

Communication and Collaboration

PCTs must effectively communicate with other healthcare professionals, such as nurses and physicians, to ensure patients receive appropriate care. They also provide updates on patients’ conditions and relay any concerns to the healthcare team.

Work Settings

PCTs work in various healthcare settings, including hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, and long-term care facilities. Their work may be physically demanding, requiring them to be on their feet for extended periods and to lift or move patients.


To become a PCT, individuals typically complete a training program that covers both classroom instruction and hands-on clinical experience. Some programs require candidates to have a high school diploma or GED. Upon completion of the training program, individuals may pursue certification, such as the Certified Patient Care Technician/Assistant (CPCT/A) offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) or the Patient Care Technician Certification (PCTC) from the American Medical Certification Association (AMCA).

Continuing Education

To maintain their skills and certifications, PCTs may need to complete continuing education courses or participate in training workshops.

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