Is CNA even worth going for? - page 3

by angellove6776

3,320 Views | 29 Comments

I was at the clinic today and I spoke to a girl who was an LPN and me and her got into a conversation about how she went about becoming an LPN. I shared with her that I was going to take a CNA course that was going to be free.... Read More


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    Heres some reasons. I work in a hospital and see nursing students all the time. From what I've seen, RN students who were never CNAs tend to struggle. New RNs who were never CNAs tend to struggle at first. Why? Because they have little or no practical patient care experience, and working as a CNA is some of the toughest and dirtiest patient care experience you can have. You learn to deal with the fact nursing aint all unicorns and rainbows and function in a less than ideal environment with continuous time constraints. RN students and new Nurses find this out the hard way. So it helps prepare you for the realities of the job. Im not saying CNA experience is the end all be all or that its necessary, but its definitely not useless.

    As for the Medical Assistant. Yeah being an MA might help you learn a few skills and pay better, and be a little easier than being a CNA. The problem is it takes a fairly long time and a fair amount of money to become an MA, so why bother if you plan on being an RN anyway? Being an MA will also result in no acute care experience, which is fine if you plan on being a nurse in a clinic or Doctors office I guess, but if you want to work in acute care you either learn on the job, or you experience it first as a CNA.

    As for LPN. The same argument could be made for being an LPN. If you want to be an RN, whats the point?
  2. 0
    I'm in nursing school now and I've never been a CNA. There are fellow classmates that are and it makes it difficult for them to learn nursing. Most of my teachers say it's better not to be a CNA if you want to be a nurse at least for the testing part because you think like a CNA and it's harder to learn to think like a nurse. I thought going into school I would have a disadvantage and I've learned that I actually have an advantage when it comes to tests and in skills they teach you all of it anyway. Hope that helps.
  3. 0
    I heard the CNA course is practically what you'll learn your first semester in nursing school...so idk how that would put you at a disadvantage... That is why most nursing schools (well in my area) are converting to making CNA a requirement in the application process in nursing school.
  4. 0
    Thanks so much for the advice. I applied to nursing colleges in CT., unfortunately didn't get in I got into waiting list. Now, I have decided to start my way up from bottom. Taking CNA course on May 28-Jun 27 so excited can't wait for it. This is what I have always wanted to do.
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    I started as a CNA back in 2009 and the only butts I cleaned were babies ones. (Did peri care on c-section Moms though), since my very first job in the field was in the Mother/Baby unit. Now an OB Scrub Tech I have different duties but still the CNA experience did pay off tons! I think nurses who have been CNA's prior to NS appreciate their CNA's a bit more, since they have walked the walk. Now about to start my NS classes in the fall I'm 100% I will be a step ahead and very confident in my skills. Go for it!
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    I don't regret becoming a CNA. It was required as a prereq for my school's nursing program. I've never worked in a nursing home, and I now work on a medical surgical unit. It's a hard job, but I've learned a lot and I believe that my experience has helped me to maintain good grades in NS so far. Working as a CNA has also helped me to realize the realities of nursing. For example, many nurses "wipe butts" too, even though many people seem to think otherwise. My job as a CNA has also helped me to get a full tuition scholarship to complete nursing school, and a guaranteed job as an RN after I complete my program. There are no complaints here. My ultimate goal is to be an ICU nurse, so learning to get over the "grossness" of some nursing tasks and working independently will help me in the future....I hope
  7. 0
    Oh! I just re-read my post and I want to explain something. When I referred to cleaning only babies butts I was saying it because the OP had someone tell her "why would you want to wipe butts?" The reality is that many nurses do. Some don't. Some nurses get their patients wanter, some don't. Being a CNA has taught me a lot including the type of nurse I want to be in the future and most of all the type of nurse I DON'T want to be!
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    Being a CNA will undoubtedly build at least some of a foundation for nursing. Is it glamorous? Heck no. Do I sometimes surprise myself when I'm helping a 75 year old man go pee? Absolutely. I think it's a confidence booster, at least for myself. Experience is EVERYTHING. How one get's it varies but even if you do it and decide you can't do it, at least you gained some knowledge and it was free!! Good luck!
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    Haha! I'm a CNA in a hospital and let me tell you, our nurses get down and dirty. All of the nurses at my facility readily help me wipe someones butt, give baths and everything. It is in their scope they just have a much wider scope but I truly appreciate it because I know they are super busy and the fact that they don't think it's above them to help me is awesome. But on another note I personally believe it was worth it for me. I did my CNA class last fall semester and just started working as one in April. It's only been a month and I know already that I do not want to become a nurse. Before I became a CNA I was so confused about if it's what I wanted to do and luckily I took the time to become a CNA so I wouldn't waste even more time becoming a nurse and THEN finding out it wasn't for me. Don't get me wrong, I love what nurse do but it is not for everyone. So I would advice that you become a CNA especially if it's free and go from there. Well good luck in either way you choose.
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    At my hospital, CNAs and techs work side-by-side, but the techs have more clinical responsibilities. If I had planned better, I would have done an EMT program to work during school. That being said, I think it is fantastic that you want to work in one of these roles. I did not appreciate how much CNAs and techs did until I was a nurse extern, which is a parallel position on my floor. I do wish I could have made what a tech makes though... they pay the externs a lot less at my hospital.


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