I want to become a CNA

  1. I would love to become a CNA. I will be 17 next year, which is the minimum age requirement in the state of Florida, and although I'm still a High School student, I'm looking into programs that will allow me to become one. I've read a lot on CNA's, and I know that it's a very dirty job and you're kind of at the bottom of the food chain, but I believe that the experience will be very valuable to me.

    What is a typical work day like for a CNA?
    what is their work schedule like?
    how do CNA's interact with patients?
    What are their duties?
    what unit/speciality do they mainly work in?
    what do CNA's in the Emergency Department do?
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   Gr4ceffa
    Jaida,

    Typical work day is preforming tasks that your patients cannot do themselves & make their ends meet. The work schedule is different, depending where you live and what facility you work for, contacting them is the best to get that question answered. They interact with patients by preforming tasks they cannot do themselves. What are their duties? Once again, preforming tasks for patients they cannot do themselves, bed baths, bathroom, showers, dressing, so on and so forth. They mainly work in LTC Failities, although it's possible to work in a hospital. You are not allowed to work in a hospital, or the emergency department without 2 or more years of experience of being a CNA, at least in my state, but I would assume it'd be the same regardless. Hope I helped a bit, good luck.
  4. by   FutureNurseErica
    Quote from Jaida
    What is a typical work day like for a CNA?
    what is their work schedule like?
    how do CNA's interact with patients?
    What are their duties?
    what unit/speciality do they mainly work in?
    what do CNA's in the Emergency Department do?
    As a CNA/GNA, my normal day in my assisted living facility consists of the following
    -Waking, bathing/grooming, and dressing residents (about 2/3 of our patients cannot get ready on their own)
    -Completing vitals and weights
    -Preparing breakfast/Passing meds
    -Cleaning and disinfecting every room and bathroom
    -Engaging the residents in a daily exercise
    -Preparing lunch
    -Laundry and any additional housekeeping that needs to be done
    -Engaging residents in a game or activity (arts & crafts)
    -Preparing dinner/passing meds
    -Bedtime

    I didn't include time for family visits or incidents from my dementia residents because each day holds something new.

    I love interacting with my residents. I see them so often and spend so much time with them that they become family, even if some of them don't remember from hour to hour.

    Your CNA duties will vary from facility to facility, but most often you are assisting with vitals and activities of daily living. The previous poster said it best, you are doing what the patient cannot do for themselves.

    I also work in the Emergency Department of my local hospital and it is very different from the assisted living. I still have to do light cleaning of rooms and patients, but at my hospital CNAs/Techs are responsible for performing 12 lead EKGs, starting IV lines, drawing blood, straight cathing, foley cathing and a few other responsibilities that I can't think of while I'm typing this. The roles of this job are truly preparing me for nursing school and beyond.

    Also, try not to buy into the bottom of the food chain thinking. We are crucial at the ground level. That's the thought I meditate on and also, you have to learn the entry-level info before continuing to progress in your skills and education. Hope this helps.
  5. by   Missingyou
    I work 2nd shift in a nursing home.
    The schedules are different. I work part time (3 days a week 8 hour shifts). I work every other weekend and every other holiday.

    I spend almost the entire shift changing briefs (diapers) or assisting someone into the bathroom and dressing/undressing residents. I sometimes feed people or at least supervise at least 4 residents eating inorder to either encourage them to eat, or to not eat too fast etc...

    I sometimes have to deal with a resident who is combative. Yes, I do get hit, kicked, grabbed etc. Not all day, every day, but it happens....

    .....that's pretty much all I do the entire shift, every shift. I rarely get any time to "visit" or "comfort" a resident. I DO get to know them and their preferences, what comforts them and what "sets them off". I care about my residents.

    You will most likely work in a long term setting...a nursing home, assisted living facility at some point. I have found that it is very difficult to get a CNA position in a hospital without AT LEAST 6 months of nursing home experience....although, it depends on the demand for CNA's in your area.

    If you do decide to become a CNA I would highly recommend strengthening your arms and leg muscles and FOCUS on ALWAYS using good body mechanics. Even if your back doesn't hurt now and you are young and strong and flexible....it doesn't take much tho throw out your back and once you hurt it, it will never be the same again.

    You will do LOTS AND LOTS of pushing, pulling, lifting...

    You will NEVER have enough time to do everything that you want and are required to do and that can be very frustrating.

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