Certified Nursing Assistants, CNAs, forms a crucial part of the healthcare team, and are usually under the supervision of licensed medical professionals and the nurses. The CNAs specializes in providing basic care directly to the patients, overseeing the daily activities. Theirs is to offer important roles in the medical communities, including residential care facilities, hospitals, home health services and rehabilitation centers.
CNA Job Overview
Certified Nursing Assistants are not only mandated to offer patients the required assessments, they also provide them with physical and emotional support. The CNAs directly interacts with the patients on a daily basis, engaging them in a friendly conversation. They act as patient’s health advocate, ensuring they get the right care they deserve. It is their duty to continuously monitor the patients’ response to treatment, listen to their individual concerns and record observations. They ensure the patient room is disinfected, clean and sanitary always.
Nursing homes and residential care CNAs do work round the clock to provide for the patients. They help the patients accomplish their daily activities which they do so with difficulty. The CNAs also comes in handy for the bedridden patients, they follow schedules to help them heal quickly and get comfortable in their positions. The Certified Nursing Assistants are trained professionals; they are warm, welcoming, friendly, and caring.
Basic CNA Job Description
The CNAs assists the patients through their daily living needs- offer transportation, comfort and vital sign monitoring. Here is a list of Certified Nursing Assistant job duties:
- Ensure patient personal hygiene, they give them shampoos, urinals, back-rubs, baths, bedpans, and shaves; help them travel to bathrooms; help with baths and showers
- Assist with daily activities; feeding patients, serving meals, positioning patients, turning, ambulating, nourishment between meals and providing fresh water
- Regular patient check and stability; check weight, check critical signs, urine test, record output and input data
- Adjunct care to the patients; administering douches, enemas, surgical preps, non-sterile dressings, heat treatments, applying restraints, therapeutic sitz bath, ice packs
- Documentation; completing forms, records, logs, and reports
- Maintain work operations through fulfilling and following procedures and policies. Keeps all the patient information secretly, abide by confidential agreement
- Get updates in their job by taking part in educational opportunities, maintaining a license, reading journals and going for further education
CNA Roles in Hospitals
Hospital CNAs are very critical to a patient’s daily living. They help the patients’ move, respond to calls, monitor patients’ blood pressure, feed the bedridden patients, clean the patients, and monitor patient vital signs. The CNAs presence in the hospital is valuable and directly contributes towards patient quality and comfort during the entire period of stay in the health facility.
A trained hospital CNA undergoes basic nursing skills and safety training, nutrition, hygiene basic concepts, life support and infection control. Hospital CNAs require GED or high school diploma and should complete CNA Certification program. Hospital CNAs in most cases work during the holidays, weekends and nights and in full time positions. This is one job that leads to strong friendly relationships; it offers a deep sense of satisfaction at work.
One requires being passionate about their job, good communication skills is an added advantage and developing patience. It requires a calling and dedication to be successful in leading a lifelong career in CNA, once in, there lots of growth space and fields to diversify afterwards.
CNA Role in Home Health Care
Apart from offering their services at the hospitals, CNAs also attend to their patient’s at their own homes. They provide assistance to patients requiring their services at their homes, for instance the mentally ill patients, the elderly, and the disabled.
Besides offering care to the patient at their homes, CNAs also provide medical treatments. They help them do what they cannot do alone effectively, for example feed them, exercising, walking, bathing and dressing. The nurses will come in very handy in helping the patients take their medications.
The CNAs may sometimes be assigned to help the patient in housekeeping; cooking, grocery shopping, providing transportation and cleaning linens. The nurses may have to visit the patients in their homes to get records concerning the patient progress, vital statistic and diet.
The home CNAs help the family members and the loved ones understand better how to care for the patient. They train the family members how to position the patient, lift and turn them and assist in other resourceful information.
CNA Role in Long Term Care
Long term care is available for patients who are most likely to remain ill for a longer period than the hospital can provide for them, or a hospital providing short term rehabilitation centers/facility. The CNA prepares a care plan that will guide them throughout the period. The nurse will be responsible for day to day care of the patient, taking records and then communicate the right information to the right authority for action.
Long term care requires proper planning and scheduling that will help the patient undergo recovery over the period without unwanted stressful situations. There are cases that require close attention while others call for routine checkups. Depending on the situation, proper records must be taken during the period. The patient must also be attended to as expected through the period.
Some of the long term cases may include care for the old, the terminally ill, those suffering from cancerous wounds, cases that may not be curable and many others. Every situation requires special attention and the nurses are well trained to handle them well.
CNA Role in Hospice Care
Hospice care is the provision of comfort care or palliative to the terminally ill. This is one challenging field and requires exceptional people to take the assignment. The hospice care is usually given by CNAs alongside the help of family members, and it is usually at the patient’s home. This kind of care can be offered at the hospice facility.
Some of the personal care that CNAs would like to administer to such patients includes bathing them, changing clothing, changing bedding, and help in with hygienic routines for instance care of wounds, washing hair and brushing of teeth. The CNAs teaches the family members about the daily routines that will be essential in treating the terminally challenged patients. Family members are great resources in helping in the healing process of the terminally ill.
The nurse diagnoses the right nutrition and supplements to the hospice patients. Even though the hospice nurses are not licensed to give injections, they help the patients take the right prescriptions by the doctor.
CNA Night Shift Duties
Night shifts forms a major part of job description of a Certified Nursing Assistant. The most common role always includes making rounds to check the patients. In addition to this, here are other roles of a CNA in a night shift;
- Take vital signs for the assigned residents
- Passing ice, making new cups and passing water
- Regular charting
- Jon may be assigned from time to time depending on the needs of the patients.
Night shifts may not be fun; one has to stay awake for longer hours during the night. There may also a larger number of patients to care for during the night as compared to day hospital care shift. It is the duty of the coming in nurse to check from the leaving nurses the progress and how the day has been, just to get updated. A conclusive report needs to be submitted the following day in the morning about the progress of the patients. Any irregular activity or serious patient’s cases should be reported accordingly. This is CNA job description.