The dialysis profession is subject to different legal requirements depending on the state. Dialysis technician training and certification in Alaska is under the jurisdiction of the private sector. Alaskan citizens typically receive care under three different healthcare systems including the private sector, the military, and the Alaskan Tribal Health System. Alaska is unique because of the number of citizens who receive care under the military and tribal systems.
Nearly 20% of the Alaskan population is eligible for services under the tribal system and approximately 14% are eligible under the military system. In comparison, the national average for healthcare eligibility is 2% tribal and 4% military. While the state of Alaska does not impose strict dialysis technician training and certification requirements, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has recently established detailed requirements.
CMS regulations 494.140 (e)(1-4) state that the patient care technician training and certification requirements in Alaska must meet these guidelines:
- Meet all applicable state requirements for:
- Standards of practice
- Have a High School Diploma or equivalency
- Complete an approved training program that includes the following subjects:
- Principles of dialysis
- Care of patients with kidney failure
- Possible complications of dialysis
- Water treatment and dialysate preparation
- Infection control
- Dialyzer reprocessing
- Certification by a State or National Program within 18 months of employment
Now that the CMS regulations require all dialysis technicians to be certified in order for dialysis facilities to receive reimbursement, it is important for individuals to understand their certification options. Dialysis technicians should inquire with the director of their dialysis facility about specific requirements prior to seeking certification. In general, technicians are required to work as a dialysis technician for a period of time before seeking certification.
Nationally recognized certification options include the following:
- The Nephrology Nursing Certification Commission (NNCC)
- Certified Clinical Hemodialysis Technician (CCHT) Exam
- The Board of Nephrology Examiners Nursing and Technology (BONENT)
- Certified Hemodialysis Technician (CHT) Exam
- The National Nephrology Certification Organization, Inc. (NNCO)
In 1978, Congress established 18 non-profit networks that are responsible for tracking the quality of dialysis care in the United States. These regional networks each have jurisdiction over one to six states where they promote rehabilitation, collect data, process patient complaints, resolve conflicts, and act as a resource. Alaska is part of Network 16 along with states including Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. You can find more information about Alaskan Dialysis Facilities by visiting the network website.
Alaska Dialysis Technician Training and Career Links
State Contact Information
Phone: (907) 269-8160
Fax: (907) 269-8156
550 W 7th Ave, Ste 1500 Anchorage, AK 99501-3567
Web Site: Alaska Board of Nursing
National Network: Network 16