CNA jobs are everywhere. No, really. That’s only a very slight exaggeration. Even during periods of economic tumult, the medical industry continues to thrive, and most of the new job opportunities are going to technical and supportive personnel. CNAs are at the top of the list; their services are in increasing high demand, as America’s population is aging and there are more and more elderly folks in need of quality medical care. All this to say: If you have an interest in the medical field, a desire to help others, and a need for stable and secure employment, the CNA field is a promising option.
But where do you find CNA jobs, exactly? Well, let’s start by considering exactly what it is a CNA does. The role of the CNA is basically to provide quality care to patients who are unable to fully care for themselves. What this means is that they perform a lot of day-to-day tasks, such as changing bedding, emptying bedpans, serving meals, and the like. They also provide some basic medical services, such as monitoring blood pressure or administering first aid as necessary. Their patients are either very ill, or, more often, simply very old.
Based on that, you can probably guess where certified nursing assistant employment can be found. For starters, you can apply at hospitals; the nursing staff always needs assistant to attend to the most basic functions of patient care. You can also look for CNA job openings at nursing homes, where there are always many elderly folks who need help and looking after. There are even designated long-term care facilities out there where you can find certified nursing assistant jobs.
As for the matter of where you should choose to work, it’s really your call. There are a few important distinctions to be made, however. Consider the fact that, for many nursing professionals, the CNA position is a sort of steppingstone into an LPN education. Much of what you learn as a CNA will transfer over into an LPN career—this is one of the big selling points of the CNA. And on that front, it should be noted that working in a hospital tends to provide a wider range of valuable experiences.
With that said, hospitals also tends to pay less, as a general rule. They also offer lesser CNA job benefits. A nursing home, meanwhile, will typically offer slightly better perks to its CNA employees. That’s not a hard-and-fast rule across the board, but a general observation about the workings of this industry.
So what else do you need to know about CNA jobs? In essence, what it boils down to is this: It’s hard work, and sometimes thankless, as well. But it is also highly rewarding, at least to those who love to serve others. And the prospects for employment are quite good. That’s enough to make the CNA field one well worth investigating.
CNA Job Description for Hospital and Nursing Home Certified Nursing Assistants
The work of a CNA can be very rewarding. On a day-to-day basis, a certified nursing assistant will assist patients, who are unable to care for themselves, with whatever medical ailments they are facing. CNAs work in many different settings including hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient facilities, clinics, and some even provide in-home care. A certified nursing assistant job description will be different, depending on whether you work in a hospital or a nursing home, but the differences are very slight, as far as daily CNA duties are concerned.
In a hospital, CNAs work alongside doctors and physicians to assist a variety of patients with their medical conditions. The duties of a certified nursing assistant in a hospital are mixed, since every patient is cared for on a case-by-case basis. Basic CNA responsibilities include: taking vital signs, helping doctors with some medical procedures, collecting samples for testing, monitoring patients and reporting changes to your supervisor (usually a Licensed Professional Nurse or a Registered Nurse), and assisting patients with such rudimentary tasks as entering or leaving their beds, walking, eating and bathing. Other CNA job duties include answering call lights, tidying patients’ rooms and monitoring food and liquid intake.
Hospital CNAs may have an advantage over nursing home CNAs because their work involves a variety of patients who rotate in and out of the hospital throughout each week. Since they are cared for on a case-by-case basis, there is usually more opportunity for hospital CNAs to learn procedures that are not often conducted inside a long-term care facility. The duties of a CNA in a nursing home are less varied, because patient turnover is not nearly as high. Nursing home CNAs care for the same patients day in and day out, and have the opportunity to develop more long-term relationships, ensuring, in some cases, more extensive, intimate care.
Basic certified nursing assistant duties in a nursing home are similar to those of a hospital CNA and include tasks such as taking vital signs, feeding patients, monitoring patients and reporting changes, bathing patients, tidying their rooms, changing their bed linens, and helping them use the bathroom. In a nursing home, CNAs work to improve the quality of life of the people who stay there long term.
The basic job description of a CNA is this: to care for patients in hospitals, outpatient facilities and long-term care facilities, who are unable to care for themselves. No matter what your day-to-day duties are, as a CNA you must possess a high level of compassion for people, and you must display a high level of patience and tact in settings that can sometimes be very fast-paced and stressful. Learning the duties, and performing the basic CNA job description is really only half of the job. In order to succeed as a certified nursing assistant, you must possess certain innate characteristics that can take years to develop.
What is the Function of a CNA in the Hospital Vs. Nursing Home?
A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) may choose to work in a hospital or in a long-term health care facility such as a nursing home or rehabilitation center. There are different benefits to working in each type of facility and only slight variations as far as duties go.
What is the function of a CNA in the hospital?
CNAs who work in a hospital may be assigned to a variety of departments. Some are employed to work in the emergency room, intensive care or progressive care, or in departments where patients are admitted due to less severe conditions. Hospital CNAs work under the direction of a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or a Registered Nurse (RN). They will provide care based on the patient’s individual care plan, which includes everything from the reason for their admittance to how often vital signs need to be taken and what other specific needs that patient may have. The CNA reports everything, including the details of the patient’s condition and the care they provide, back to the LPN or RN, before the next course of treatment toward recovery is determined.
On a day-to-day basis, hospital CNA duties include: assisting patients with using a toilet or bedpan, taking vital signs, testing the insulin levels of patients who are diabetic, providing them with food and drink throughout the course of their hospital stay, and changing patients’ clothing and bed linens.
What is the function of a CNA in a nursing home?
As previously stated, there are only slight differences as far as day-to-day duties go. Just like in a hospital setting, long-term care facilities require CNA’s to assist patients with everyday functions like using the toilet, eating, bathing, and changing clothing and linens. However, outside of these basic functions, nursing home CNAs don’t have many other duties. Since long-term care facilities house the same patients every day, the functions are more routine than those practiced by hospital CNAs.
Which setting is more preferable?
There are pros and cons to working in both settings. In a hospital, patient turnover is high. Because you’re dealing with patients who need care for different reasons, you see more patients on a day-to-day basis, making the job more fast-paced and less relaxed than it would be in a nursing home. There is also more variety, which means more opportunity to learn and excel in different areas. Because every patient is different, they receive care on a case-by-case basis. This variety opens up doors for hospital CNAs to learn more about anatomy, diagnostics, and computer charting – all of which will come in handy for someone who wants to go on to nursing school to become an RN. Hospital CNAs get more opportunities to perform procedures that they would not need to conduct if they worked in a nursing home.
Nursing home CNAs typically care for the same patients every day, dealing with the same medical conditions and performing the same rudimentary functions of bathing, feeding, and changing linens. This type of setting is ideal for CNAs who would like to get to know their patients and provide them with more extensive and personalized care. Nursing homes generally pay more than hospitals, though in many cases the work is less desirable. Nursing homes can also be very dirty and depressing when patients pass away. Hospital settings, however, are consistently sanitized and usually much more clean.
Traveling CNA Jobs
There are a lot of fairly obvious perks to working in the medical field—usually, a good salary, or at least job stability, and the rewards that come from providing a meaningful service to others—but typically speaking, travel isn’t one of them. Doctors, surgeons, nurses—more often than not, these medical professionals work in a set location. They work in the same hospital everyday, or devote all their time to a couple or maybe even just one practice. The medical field is, with some exceptions, not an industry that utilizes a lot of moving around.
But those exceptions are there, and they are worth noting. There can be real perks to having a job that allows you to travel between different locations; in fact, for some folks, it’s absolutely ideal, as it allows them to have different experiences and see different people day after day. A position as a traveling CNA is one of them; serving in this capacity, you might find yourself working in a hospital one day and a nursing home the next, in addition to making stops at long-term care facilities and even individual homes. It’s a great way to mix medical service with variety and constant movement.
A CNA, of course, is a Certified Nursing Assistant. These medical professionals are generally there to assist patients with basic functions of daily living, which is why many of them work in nursing homes or long-term care facilities, where the patients may face physical or cognitive disabilities that prevent them from doing the kinds of basic, hygienic stuff that the rest of us take for granted. That said, a CNA must also see to medical functions, especially in instances of emergency; this is why becoming a CNA requires some training in first aid, CPR, and fundamental medical terminology.
A CNA’s duties can be many, and they are typically split fairly evenly between medical work and more menial tasks. For instance, an average day might find you taking blood pressure and temperature readings, checking a pulse, and taking care of infections. It might also find you making up beds, cleaning a patient’s immediate environment, and so forth. It’s this kind of variety that makes the CNA field so attractive for so many.
It’s also why CNA professionals are needed in so many different locations. CNA travel jobs are more and more common, as America’s population grows older and needs more and more of this level of care and support. Finding a CNA travel assignment, then, is easier than ever, and the prospects should only become more plentiful in coming years. This is reason enough to consider this career; you will need a high school diploma or GED, and also a willingness to engage in some in-service training. In exchange, you’ll get a career that can be rewarding in its own right, while also providing a stepping stone toward future career development.
CNA Instructor Jobs
For some people, service comes naturally. There are folks out there who simply love providing care for others; it’s like a matter of instinct. It’s what they love to do, and it’s what they are, quite naturally and on their own, good at. Call it God-given talent, call it a matter of genetics, but whatever you call it, be thankful there are people like this in the world. And don’t take them for granted; while it may be true, to an extent, that their talent for caregiving is natural, the reality is that learning to provide a meaningful, medically-inclined service to those in need is something that takes a lot of hard work and focused training.
If you don’t believe it, just ask anybody who works as a CNA. To be sure, there are plenty of CNAs in the world, but they didn’t come by their profession without some effort. CNA training typically last anywhere from 4 to 12 weeks, and goes over all the professional skill sets and qualities needed to make it in the industry.
And as you can no doubt figure out, training means trainers. Some people work as CNAs, and some work as CNA instructors. This is a highly rewarding field in itself. Typically, a CNA instructor is an LPN, an RN, or a CNA who is zealous for training the next generation of caregivers. So if you’re looking for CNA instructor jobs, listen up—there are plenty of prospects out there. It’s just a matter of knowing where to look.
A great place to be might be at your local chapter of the American Red Cross. Here, you will likely be able to uncover some good leads about certified nursing assistant instructor jobs. In recent years, you see, the Red Cross has made it a priority to offer CNA training to anyone and everyone who is interested. This is in keeping with a nationwide demand for qualified CNAs. The downside is that most Red Cross chapters employ only nurses as CNA instructors, which you may or may not qualify for, but even if they cannot provide you with a job, they can likely point you in the right direction.
Another good idea is to look up CNA instructor online curriculum information. Doing this will help you to pinpoint some certain areas of expertise in which you’ll need to be proficient as an instructor. This way, you can ensure that you are well suited and fully prepared for the job. You can also use this information to help form your resume and even plan what you’ll say in a job interview.
CNA instructor jobs are not too difficult to find, in the end, because CNA positions are themselves fairly common. That means quality instruction is always in demand. If you feel like you have what it takes to educate the next generation of CNAs, this career could be a terrific option for you.