Are you a kind-hearted person? Do you want to help care for patients in hospitals and nursing care facilities? Read on to see if a career as a certified nursing assistant is right for you.
A Nursing assistant is a member of the health care team who provides personal care and related health care aid to the individuals who are disabled, ill, dependent on others, or who are residents of health care facilities. CNAs work in the hospitals, community care facilities and nursing care facilities for the aged.
There is a lot of interest found in the field of CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant). One of the main reasons behind it is that people want to perform community service and work for the welfare of the people by helping the patients. Another reason people choose this career is that the health industry is growing rapidly with time due to increase in elderly population; undoubtedly more opportunities will be offered to CNAs with the passage of time. The demand for the CNA’s is very high, particularly in those institutions that offer continuous health care and living to the elderly and aged people. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov, the job prospects for a Certified Nursing Assistant are expected to increase up by 28% between 2006 and 2016. This expected growth is much rapid than the average for all professions.
Certified nursing assistants work closely with patients and they are responsible for their basic care services such as bathing, grooming, feeding, serving nutritional supplements to them, making their beds, keeping their space clean and tidy, setting up their meal trays, documenting food / fluid intake and monitoring vital signs including temperature, pulse, respiration and blood pressure. Their job is also to help the nurses with the patients’ medical equipment and to check patient’s vital signs. CNAs give patients required social and emotional care and they are also responsible to give important information on patient conditions to the nurses.
Certified Nursing Assistants usually have much more contact with the patients than any other medical staff and they have the most information about the patients’ daily statuses and conditions. CNAs can work in a variety of environments, including the ones listed below:
- Hospital Certified Nursing Assistants
- Home Health Certified Nursing Assistants
- Psychiatric Certified Nursing Assistants
In order to become a certified nursing assistant, one needs to complete a training course, which can take up to four to six weeks. This time duration depends upon the person’s choice: If you are a quick learner, then you’ll take more classes online and will become a CNA within a short span of time. A longer length program might be useful for you if you are doing a job. A shorter length program might be beneficial if you are unemployed or are completely free. People those who are eager to start their career as a CNA may want to go for shorter length program as they would want to start their services as a CNA as soon as possible.
There are a lot of opportunities provided to become a CNA while there are some prerequisites in order to be eligible for Certified Nursing course. A high school diploma or its equivalent at least, is a prerequisite for the completion of Certified Nursing Assistant Certification Programme, although some home health aides may be exempted from the requirement to have a high school diploma.
Training to become a certified nursing assistant is provided by community colleges. One can easily learn and study certified nursing course there. Many schools offer training within medical services as part of their course packages as well. Almost in every city and state, the schools provide training programmes. Certified nursing assistant programs are provided online as well, in order to help people avail the training and successfully become a certified nursing assistant. Free CNA training classes are provided to those willing to become a CNA online.
The base of teachings in a certified nursing assistant program is comprised of 4 things.
It basically includes:
- Basic nursing skills
- Anatomy and physiology
- Infection control
The cost is for CNA training courses is not quite expensive. The average cost for a CNA course may range from $800 to $1,500. This includes the tuition cost, the cost of the State exam, physical exam, books, uniforms, tuberculosis skin test and CPR card.
All CNA’s are required to take an examination known as the State Exam before they are classified as the qualified nursing assistants. The candidates are required to successfully pass this CNA certification test in order to prove themselves. The competency exam will test both your book knowledge and the practical skills that were taught to you during the training. It will also check your understanding of the fundamental skills and whether you have the concepts needed in order to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (Nurse Aide). Practice tests and study guides are easily available online, so studying for the test should not be that difficult. The study guides are available for free. CNA exam questions are available on the internet and many books containing them are available in the book shops.
After becoming a certified nursing assistant, you can start your job whenever you want as a CNA. With the required skills, the ones you had practised in the training, you would not have too much trouble getting a job as a CNA. After receiving your CNA certification, you could even pursue your education and become a medical assistant. You might also think about joining a nursing school to become an official nurse or a qualified practical nurse. Your experience as a CNA could prove helpful when applying to these training programs.
The average salary of the CNA ranges around $25000-27000 annually. This salary range given is based on a national average. Actual salaries merely depend upon the specialization within the certain field, location, years of experience and service and a variety of other factors.