Under the direct supervision of a nurse registered nurse (RN) or nurse practitioner Licensed practical nurse (LPN), a certified nursing assistant (CNA) helps patients with affairs of daily living and other health requirements. Therefore, CNA is often referred to as nursing assistants, patient care assistants (PCAs), or nurse aides. Some nurses use their talents to bridge the gap between their current cna job and becoming an LPN or RN. Surprisingly, many nurses are already enrolled in nursing school and use this job as an opportunity to study more about the healthcare industry and obtain more practical experience and knowledge. Others become a CNA to see if they want to continue their education in the healthcare field.
CNA job description
CNA can assist nurses with several medically complicated patients in keeping a unit functioning efficiently. A CNA job description includes the following:
- Turning or repositioning patients.
- Collecting supplies for the nurse or physician.
- Taking vital signs according to protocol.
- Answering patient calls/bells.
- Documenting information received.
- Feeding, measuring, and recording the food and hydration consumption of patients.
- Combing hair, shaving, grooming nails, and brushing teeth.
- Cleaning rooms and bedding.
- Replenishing supplies.
- Prepare rooms for admissions.
- Assist with medical procedures.
- Dressing wounds.
Direct responsibilities vary depending on the location and ultimately the needs of the nursing staff.
Education and CNA training programs requirements
Even though a CNA is an entry-level position, you will require education and get the cna training programs to perform your duties safely and successfully. Learning the proper precautions and procedures is necessary to protect your patients, as well as yourself. CNA training programs typically run for four to twelve weeks and are frequently provided in community colleges and vocational schools. In addition, classes may be offered by organizations, as well as some hospitals and nursing homes in your area.
You must complete state-approved training programs to become a CNA certified nursing assistant. If a program is not state-approved, it does not qualify you for a role as a cna nurse. In addition, federal law requires cna training programs to include at least 75 hours of training classes, although states may set criteria beyond that. Contact the authority that oversees certified nursing assistants in your state for more information, usually the Nursing Board or the Department of Health.
What does a Certified Nursing Assistant program teach you?
A CNA program involves a combination of classroom instruction and clinical training. You will know a wide range of skills and information on the following topics:
- Bathing and applying dressings
- Taking vital signs
- Properly transferring and moving patients
- Controlling infections
- Communicating effectively
- Dealing with emergencies
- Maintaining a clean and safe environment
- Understanding the fundamentals of anatomy, physiology and body mechanics
- Feeding and nutrition
Completion of a state-approved program qualifies you to take the certification exam required by your state. In addition, you can be added to your state’s CNA register, a list of certified nursing assistants who meet federal and state work standards after passing this exam and fulfilling all other requirements.
Certified Nursing Assistant Exam:
A CNA exam is administered by each state and consists of a written test/knowledge test and a skills evaluation. Most forms work with an outside test administrator to assist the exam process. The three largest providers of CNA exams are NNAAP/Pearson Vue, Prometric, and HEADMASTER.
Below are brief details about these exams:
1. NNAAP (PEARSON VUE) CNA EXAM
The National Nurse Assistant Assessment Program is a competency-based test utilized by more than 25 states and territories to evaluate licensed nursing assistants’ abilities (CNA). The NCSBN, which stands for National Council of State Boards of Nursing, introduced the NNAAP certification program to comply with federal and state laws and regulations. Pearson Vue administers the exam. There are two sections to the CNA exam: a written exam and a clinical skills exam. There are multiple-choice questions on the written component of the exam based on a job analysis and examination of nurse aide knowledge, skills, and abilities. The skills exam requires candidates to perform five randomly selected skills of a nursing assistant. Candidates have 25 minutes to complete the five skills.
2. PROMETRIC CNA EXAM
The Prometric CNA exam consists of two components: a written exam which includes MCQs, a clinical skills exam in which candidates must perform five clinical skills from a list of twenty skills. Two of them include hand washing and indirect care. Candidates must complete the exam in 90 minutes. The time limit for the skills exam is between 31 and 40 minutes based on the skills selected.
3. HEADMASTER/HDMASTER CNA EXAM
The headmaster CNA exam, like other test providers, is divided into two parts: a written exam and a manual skills exam. The written CNA exam consists of 75 multiple-choice questions. The manual skills exam consists of three or four selected skills. One of the following skills is chosen: female perineal care, bedpan, and output, or male perineal care with a change of soiled briefs.
Advantages of become a CNA Certified Nursing Assistant
In this field, you have the chance to develop both personally and professionally. If you’re wondering what that might look like, here are a few benefits of become a CNA Certified Nursing Assistant:
- Job Stability
One thing you never have to concern about when it comes to become a CNA is job stability. There is a growing demand for positions of cna nurses, and therefore job stability will come easier. If you find yourself in a circumstance where you need to relocate, a CNA position will be available wherever you go.
If you are looking for a job – flexibility can be necessary depending on your personal life. Certified Nursing Assistants have the option of working in one of three shifts, giving you the freedom to negotiate and control your work schedule.
- Emotionally rewarding
The emotional reward they gain as they work for their patients is one of the reasons someone chooses a CNA profession. You can have the opportunity to make a difference in one’s life through the care you provide. You will understand why this job is gratifying when you can witness your impact on other people’s lives.
CNA nursing certification is not expensive compared to other programs. Many companies are committed to supporting the education of their employees through tuition assistance programs.
- Enriching work experience
Not only is this profession emotionally rewarding, but it can also provide you with nursing training that will make you a more skilled caregiver. In addition, people generally learn more through experiences they gain over the years.
CNA Salary and Job Prospects
CNA nurses can fill a need in hospitals, long-term care institutions, and private homes as the demand for healthcare services rises in response to an aging population. According to the BLS Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S., the employment of CNA is projected to enhance by 8% through 2029, which is substantially faster than the average rate.
In addition, the average yearly cna salary may vary depending on years of working experience, location, employer, and other factors.