As the numbers of baby boomers continue to rise at an alarming rate, so is the need for CNAs, Certified Nursing Assistants. A CNA works under the direction and guidance of a nurse, and as their name would suggest, they assist the nurses in providing routine care to patients. This way, nurses can channel their efforts and time on other more urgent and demanding tasks in caring for the patients. As a result, CNA training programs have also gained in popularity significantly as the demand for these qualified assistants rise. Simply put, these programs prepare aspiring nursing assistants for a challenging and fulfilling career in the health care industry.
Part of the work of a Certified Nursing Assistant include helping patients in grooming, bathing, dressing up, eating, walking, working out etc. Further, it is the CNA who checks the vital signs (blood pressure, heart rate, body temperature, and respiratory rate) of the patients and record for further action from the nurse in charge.
A qualified Certified Nursing Assistant can work in long-term healthcare facilities, hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and private residences. The training is offered in nursing homes, community colleges, long-term health care facilities, and also in hospitals. Further, thanks to advancement in technology, CNA training courses can also be taken entirely online, or on a combination of both online and a brick and mortar classroom settings. Online training assumes the form of interactive chat rooms, videos, forums, and teleconferences among other advanced ways of interacting via the internet. Most people today prefer online training as it offers more flexibility and convenience to busy CNAs aspirants.
Upon successful completion of a CNA training program, candidates have to sit a CNA qualifiers and certification final examination which is given by respective states of residence of candidates. The state CNA certification examination is made up of two parts – oral test/ written test and skills/ practical test. The skills test expects students to demonstrate their competence and skills by performing randomly selected clinical procedures on live models. As is evidence therefore, CNA training program equips learners with both theoretical and practical knowledge on the application of learned and acquired skills. In order to pass the state CNA examination and get certified, candidates must gain enough clinical experience in the field.
A typical CNA training course can take about 2-12 weeks to complete, depending on where you decide to undertake your training. Some of the basic topics covered include infection control, nutrition, anatomy, safety, biology, physiology, chemistry, and basic nursing skills. The training program also sharpens interpersonal skills — both observational and communication skills so that candidates can be able to provide the best possible personalized care to needy patients. A certified Nursing Assistant certification can open very many doors to advanced career in the health care industry. For one, it can be a great stepping-stone to being an RN, Registered Nurse.
Your Work Profile After Getting CNA License
Getting a CNA license gives you the authorization to function as a professional nursing assistant in various medical establishments. The role of these professionals who have earned this certification is a crucial one in any medical establishment. In order to become a certified nursing assistant, one needs to go through the entire training program. The training program involves classroom training as well as clinical training. Once the program has been completed, the applicant is required to sit for a test which is conducted by the state board, passing which they become certified nursing assistants.
The work to do
Once the nursing assistant gets the CNA license, the main rigor of the profession begins. The nursing assistant has to observe the patient assigned to him/her and regularly note down the temperature, pulse rates, blood pressure, among others. Apart from this, there is the responsibility of helping out the patients with their bathing, changing and even eating. They assist the patient by setting up appropriate food trays which include the right portions of food that would be good for the patient. The added responsibilities are of taking the patient to diagnostic centers when necessary. A CNA also handles the family members of the patient. Hence, a certified nursing assistant has myriad roles to play.