Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA)
- Help people
- Make a difference
- Avance quickly
Nursing and nurse assisting are increasingly in-demand professions. According to US Labor Bureau statistics, more new nursing personnel will be needed in the next five years than have been needed in the past ten.
Certified nurse assistants (CNAs) serve as a support structure for the rapidly growing nursing sector. They have been called the nurse's "eyes and ears," providing patients with the basic daily care that nurses normally do not have time to provide. They become familiar with their patients, keeping the nurse informed on the patient's status and allowing the nurse to perform the higher-level duties only they can perform.
CNAs can be found in a variety of settings, including hospitals, assisted living facilities, adult day health centers, in personal homes, or in any facility that provides basic nursing care.
Some other certified nurse assistant work settings:
- Private clinics
- Public schools
- Government public health agencies
- Military hospitals
A growing demand
While there are many reasons why certified nurse assistants are in such demand, one of the biggest is the changing population demographic of the United States. As the baby boomer generation ages, they are needing more health care than ever. In addition, many baby-boomer nurses are reaching retirement themselves, creating a vacuum of open positions for personnel who perform nursing duties. This is especially true for hospitals, long-term care facilities, and home health-care facilities.
Of course, the nursing shortage also has a downside. Many nurse assistants will find they are serving many patients at once, which can make the job particularly demanding. However, it is also a very rewarding profession, and statistics show the vast majority of CNAs would recommend the position to others.
There is an enormous range of job opportunities for certified nurse assistants, and the health care industry desperately needs them. Many CNAs even pursue further training to become registered nurses. It isn't a relaxing career by any means, but it is certainly a career that makes a difference in people's lives, every single day.
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Education for this career involves a short nursing training program taken at either a care facility or a junior or career college, followed by certification and on-the-job training.
- Applying dressings
- Taking vital signs
- Conducting range-of-motion exercises
- Assisting with routines of daily living