Am I right for this/is this right for me?

  1. 0
    Hi all,

    I completed an 8-week CNA course at the end of August with relative ease. From a glance I got of my test scores before the lady took them away, I only missed two on my demonstration part and around 4 on the written.

    I didn't fill out an application at the nursing home my class interned at, but I did put my name on a list of students who were "interested" in employment, and got a call at the beginning of October. I went down there and had the job. The staff development manager lady I was interviewed by didn't even look at my resume.

    So it's been a month, and while I enjoy most parts of this work, I find myself really struggling to keep afloat. This is very emotionally distressing for me, because I am working nonstop my whole shift to get everything done and it just seems like I go nowhere or maybe I finish everything just in time to leave. The other CNAs on the floor are mostly helpful, but the attitude/work atmosphere/"mood" on the floor is not really that encouraging. The politics of it really stresses me out when I trust that the other girls are doing their job even when they have 4 call lights on (in a 4-room/8-patient run) but yet if I have one or two on and am too busy to get to them right away, one of them will find me and lecture me even while I am giving someone else care, or worse, chastise me in front of visitors.

    I am trying my hardest but it does not seem to meet par for this place. I don't sit and talk with the residents. I do my work as best and as efficiently as I know how. I am experiencing more and more stress related to this, to the point where I have considered quitting instead of letting somebody report me and strip me of my license. I know of one report that has already been filed for sure and I am not keen on the idea of being convicted of negligence because I cannot keep up with the workload.

    Any advice? Stick with it, find another location, etc etc?

    For reference, this is one of the best nursing homes in my state, I am told that I am lucky to work there, that it won't get better anywhere else, so on...the starting pay is pretty well above normal for this kind of work, and the schedule of work is "4 days on, 2 days off" unless we are very very short.

    Would appreciate some rational advice! I can't bring myself to a logical decision that is not swayed by emotion right now. I am really stressed out and biting my nails over this.
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  3. 4 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Unfortunately, this is one of the "bad parts" of being a cna. The job is intense and many times, just like the Nurses, we are understaffed. I say, just do the math. When I worked in a nursing home I could NEVER get done with all the work and I literally ran room to room. Now the math....I normally had at least 12 patients, turns were every 2 hours, brief changes every 2 hours...now IF one spent just 10 minutes per pt changing and turning that comes to 120 min.(2 hours!). So, by the time you got to your last pt, it would be time to go back to the first one. The problem is...there is MORE to the job than just turning and changing every 2 hours. When is one suppose to pass trays, feed (this can take 30-45 min for each pt), shower/bath, dress (shoes, socks, pants, etc), shave, oral care,vital signs, nail care, taking pt's out to family's car, rechange that pt with massive loose bowels due to c-diff about 4 times an hour, fill all the water pitchers, keep those two pts that are confused and trying to climb out of bed from falling on the floor, try to explain to the nurse why you did not get to room #? yet, try to explain to family member of pt in room#? why she's not dressed yet?

    It all seems pretty unrealistic, but believe me, this is a daily life for a cna. To me, I give my ALL. I know that it is not always enough, but I go home happy knowing that I did my best for everyone of my residents and the nurses. If the facility questioned me, as had happened in the above facility, I would tell them exactly how I feel about the care that I give and question them as to IF they care about the residents then why do THEY not staff the floor sufficiently. Spend enough to hire enough quality Nurses and CNA's and surely I will get my job done the way that you want it to be done. However, given the above scenerio, one can easily see how it would be impossible to get everything done and the ONLY answer is to staff appropriately. After saying all of that...I would be expecting to leave as per their request and it would not bother me one bit, because I know that I give my all to my residents/pts and will not let anyone tell me any different. I truly feel that it is their loss. After saying the above to my facility, nothing was ever mentioned to me again, and when I left...to pursue a hospital job, as that is where I want to work when I graduate, they wanted me to stay! They know that I was correct and that it was an impossible task that they asked of me and that we were not staffed adequately. I wish you all the best. Keep your head up and give your best everyday. For your patients' sake, give your all and then go home happy! Do not let a facility that does not want to staff adequately let you feel like YOU are not adequate. As far as the other cna's...looks can be deceiving. The cna's that I worked with would stay in the break room all shift long and then just before shift change, they would go around and clean up their pts so that they would be clean for the next shift. It would appear that they were excellent time managers, but the truth is they are just lazy and uncaring. The nurses knew it, but instead of making them work, they would come up to me and say, "can you clean up, feed, whatever pt in room 214? I know he's not your pt, but you know "cindy" isn't going to do it!" I am NOT kidding either! That was my life every shift.

    Sincerely,
    Jay
  5. 0
    Quote from jb2u
    Unfortunately, this is one of the "bad parts" of being a cna. The job is intense and many times, just like the Nurses, we are understaffed. I say, just do the math. When I worked in a nursing home I could NEVER get done with all the work and I literally ran room to room. Now the math....I normally had at least 12 patients, turns were every 2 hours, brief changes every 2 hours...now IF one spent just 10 minutes per pt changing and turning that comes to 120 min.(2 hours!). So, by the time you got to your last pt, it would be time to go back to the first one. The problem is...there is MORE to the job than just turning and changing every 2 hours. When is one suppose to pass trays, feed (this can take 30-45 min for each pt), shower/bath, dress (shoes, socks, pants, etc), shave, oral care,vital signs, nail care, taking pt's out to family's car, rechange that pt with massive loose bowels due to c-diff about 4 times an hour, fill all the water pitchers, keep those two pts that are confused and trying to climb out of bed from falling on the floor, try to explain to the nurse why you did not get to room #? yet, try to explain to family member of pt in room#? why she's not dressed yet?

    It all seems pretty unrealistic, but believe me, this is a daily life for a cna. To me, I give my ALL. I know that it is not always enough, but I go home happy knowing that I did my best for everyone of my residents and the nurses. If the facility questioned me, as had happened in the above facility, I would tell them exactly how I feel about the care that I give and question them as to IF they care about the residents then why do THEY not staff the floor sufficiently. Spend enough to hire enough quality Nurses and CNA's and surely I will get my job done the way that you want it to be done. However, given the above scenerio, one can easily see how it would be impossible to get everything done and the ONLY answer is to staff appropriately. After saying all of that...I would be expecting to leave as per their request and it would not bother me one bit, because I know that I give my all to my residents/pts and will not let anyone tell me any different. I truly feel that it is their loss. After saying the above to my facility, nothing was ever mentioned to me again, and when I left...to pursue a hospital job, as that is where I want to work when I graduate, they wanted me to stay! They know that I was correct and that it was an impossible task that they asked of me and that we were not staffed adequately. I wish you all the best. Keep your head up and give your best everyday. For your patients' sake, give your all and then go home happy! Do not let a facility that does not want to staff adequately let you feel like YOU are not adequate. As far as the other cna's...looks can be deceiving. The cna's that I worked with would stay in the break room all shift long and then just before shift change, they would go around and clean up their pts so that they would be clean for the next shift. It would appear that they were excellent time managers, but the truth is they are just lazy and uncaring. The nurses knew it, but instead of making them work, they would come up to me and say, "can you clean up, feed, whatever pt in room 214? I know he's not your pt, but you know "cindy" isn't going to do it!" I am NOT kidding either! That was my life every shift.

    Sincerely,
    Jay
    Every thing you said here is absolutely true.
    I think the only thing we can do is bust our bummies, and prioritize:we have to decide what tasks are vital for the patients welfare, and make sure these are where we put our best first effort, and then do our best to do the rest if possible. The heck with how we are evaluated by staff.
    We are the ones who have to live with ourselves, and go to sleep knowing we have done all we can.
    I am working at a great place, with great nurses right now. I can take a clue from them: what is really important? I have to focus on that, cause if the census is up, there is no way I can do the lower priority items without sacrificing what needs to be done....I did that the other day and what a mess! I still think that this would apply in a SNF. You have to manage your day, or it will manage you! Decide at the onset, what is really possible, what is not. I remember trying to do the impossible, doing more in a day than most. It never occurred to me to say, this will get done, this will not. It just is not possible. If you want this done, we need more help.
  6. 0
    I sympathise with you.I have been there.The boss always seemed to have a problem no matter what i did.I loved my patients and gave the best care possible yet was made to feel like i wasn't doing enough.Think she just had it out for me as i was one of the best cna's there.I was doing my share and helping the others out with theirs as well.In the end i just quit and left.Missed my patients but had to keep my sanity.I'm now going on to pursue my RN.Hope things look up for you soon.
  7. 0
    Thanks for all the kind responses. They were very encouraging...

    Since I posted that I've had a couple good days and a hellish one. It seems that many people are talking about how this place is not what it used to be from a class perspective or an employment perspective. One person said, "I'll have to speak with [Administrator X] on Monday" and one resident said (without my bringing up the subject at all), "You know, this place will get better if they get rid of [Administrator X]"...

    The good days are good, but I feel that on the bad days we are kind of thrown to the wolves. Our DSD usually doesn't answer her phone when we need her permission to hire a registry CNA to come in, which is BIGTIME aggravating. Sunday, I almost lost hope and walked right out the door, as I had a demanding and nitpicky patient that needs a Hoyer lift go to the bathroom four times before 9:00, another one with vomiting and diarrhea...we were two CNAs short, we got one registry in that didn't know a thing, and...just yeah. The DSD had previously said that should any of us have 9 patients she will give the OK to call registry, but after all was said and done, a few people had 9 and that was perfectly OK by her. She talks openly with us about how this is because our company is losing money every month. I was one of those people with 9 and happened to have quite a few high-maintenance patients. Not appreciated and at that moment I didn't care how much debt the organization was in. My lunch was 10 minutes long. I got out 20 minutes late because a lady had family coming and wasn't even up yet, clocked out, chugged a Diet Coke and some lifesavers, and saw that no one was relieving my call lights...so I just went downstairs and worked until it was my time to clock back in, then did so.

    Now my question to you guys, I have a CNA license but not an acute care license. Should I give up all hope of working in a hospital without it? Is it possible? Is hospital work any better?


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