Dialysis Technician vs. Patient Care Technician

Dialysis is the procedure by which toxins and excess water, solutes in the body, are removed when the kidneys cannot function correctly. A dialysis technician is a person who is responsible for monitoring the dialysis process.

Dialysis technicians are also in charge of maintaining and assembling medical equipment like dialysis machines and ensuring they operate smoothly.

They also need to sterilize the equipment before its usage.

The technician communication skills should be good since they work side-by-side with the other medical staff to ensure patients’ safety who are undergoing dialysis treatment.

Besides, Dialysis Technicians need to exhibit their understanding and concerns towards patients, making sure that they feel safe and comfortable, emotionally, and physically.

This is an essential job in the health sector, which requires a lot of commitment and dedication to patient care.

The Qualification required for a Dialysis Technician

Students who want to become a Dialysis Technician need to earn a diploma or degree in the field of dialysis and must have a necessary amount of experience and or have completed an approved training course in the operation of medical equipment of dialysis. Generally these courses take around two years to finish.

A Dialysis Technician must have proper education, training, and certification and license and credentials (such as CHT, CCHT, or CHBT) from an authentic institution. To get employed, the candidates have to get their license by passing the examination.

However, for the profession of Dialysis Technician, the credentialing required differ from state to state. Some states need the technician to have Hemodialysis Technician Certification (CHT) which is issued by the Board of Nephrology Examiners Nursing and Technology (BONENT).

In addition to CHT, some acknowledge the certification in Clinical Nephrology Technology (CCNT) acquired through the National Nephrology Certification Organization (NNCO) or a certificate of Biomedical Nephrology Technology (CBNT).

Where does Dialysis Technician work?

Dialysis is generally conducted in hospitals, labs, or dialysis clinics. Hospitals or dialysis centers and clinics employ most of the dialysis technicians.

When patients cannot come to the hospitals and clinics, they use dialysis equipment for treatment at home and oversee the process dialysis technicians are also employed in-home care.

One of the primary duties of techs employed in-home care is to train them to use the home dialysis machine independently.

Dialysis Technician Responsibilities:

Primary Responsibilities and Duties

A dialysis technician who administrates the dialysis process is responsible for cleaning and assembling the dialysis machine and performing correctly.

When the technicians work directly with their patients, they check their chart and details, they conduct local anesthesia and inserts the syringes, and start the dialysis as per the prescription.

During dialysis, the technician examines the fluid rates, anticoagulant (blood thinners) and regulates them as accordingly. They must ensure that the patients are in proper position and must stay alert to respond to any emergencies immediately.

After the dialysis is completed, the technician will carefully disconnect the machine and sterilize it, and records the patient’s condition.

Other Responsibilities and Duties

Dialysis requires the technician to be present throughout the process, making them an essential part of a patient’s health care team.

The technician is responsible for the patient’s emotional and physical concerns to get help from the registered nurse or doctor if necessary.

A positive attitude, dedication to patient care, and keenness to explain the procedure, answer their questions, and educate them about health maintenance and medical care are essential.

The technician must have the proper knowledge and adequate skills to guide the patient throughout the regimen.

Patient Care Technician

Patient Care Technicians’ primary focus is to work hand in hand with the doctors and nurses to prepare and analyze the patients’ care program for their recovery.

Patient Care Technician (PCTs) plays a vital role in the healthcare sector, and the patients live by studying necessary care for them, such as serving them meals, helping them with restroom needs, or cleaning and changing their bedding.

PCTs are also required to monitor vital signs, offer emotional guidance and enthusiastic help to the patients and their households. offer to the patients and their families.

They, too, are in direct contact with the patients, helping them with their medical checkups or hospital stays while improving their well-being.

The Qualification required for a Patient Care Technician

Patient care technicians (PCTs) are trained professionals in the healthcare sector responsible for providing essential medical care to the patients. For becoming a PTC, one is required to have a General Education Diploma (GED) or a high school diploma.

They need to graduate from a Nursing Assistant course with an approved certificate.

Completed training of PTC from a respected institute is required. The training program will teach you various medical performance and medical terminology such as anatomy, phlebotomy, physiology, EKG, etc.

You’ll get to learn how to provide proper and essential care to the patient along with emotional support during the time of crisis.

With proper knowledge and skills, certification from an authentic institution is also required, but this requirement varies from state to state.

Where does a Patient Care Technician work?

PCTs can provide their assistance to doctors and nurses wherever required. That’s why Patient Care Technicians are found working in many different healthcare environments, like hospitals, home care, nursing home facilities, ambulatory health care services, residential care facilities, etc.

And they’re also rarely found working in physicians’ offices.

Basic Duties

The tasks carried out by PCT mainly depends on the department of the medical facility they’re working in and the patients they are serving. Most of the duties of PCT are related to providing direct care and support to the patient.

Patient care technicians are responsible for assisting patients in hospitals, residential care facilities, and long-term nursing care facilities.

Some of the basic tasks that a patient care technician is expected to perform are helping patients get in and out of bed, bathing, dressing, and other daily activities.

Assisting patients with injuries or mobility difficulty get into wheelchairs, helping them with their routine exercise, taking their vital signs, and providing them and their families comfort and emotional support during stressful times.

Other essential tasks of PTCs include tracking a patient’s physical improvements and daily progress during care.

They must pay attention and listen to their patients’ concerns and help them with their problems or inform the doctor and nurses about it and answer their queries. Collecting blood or urine samples for further testing, turning in samples to the suitable laboratory.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, Patient Care Tech provides much more direct patient care and is steadily involved in assisting their patients with routine activities.

Whereas the Dialysis technician does not have the same responsibilities, they are also directly involved with patient care, but only during dialysis.

They do not assist them in their day to day activities like a Patient Care Tech does.

Dialysis technicians are in charge of maintaining, assembling, and cleaning the dialysis equipment and assisting the patient during the dialysis and the Patient Care Technician is not responsible for taking care of the medical equipment.

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