Failed the stupid CNA test again...for what???

  1. 0
    I re-took my CNA skills test today. Had a different tester and thought everything would go fine.

    Everything wen't completely smooth, until I did the blood pressure. THe stethescope they use is one of those training ones with 2 earpieces. So I go to take it, and do everything okay, I listen and get 130/90 . the tester jsut says "Write it down" So I did, then she says "Now do it again." My instructor gave me a bizarre look and I could tell she was getting nervous because her breathing picked up. So I take it again, this time I get 140 /95. This time the tester just says "You've failed this procedure." She said on the first time, SHE got 136/88 then the second time got 132/92, and I'm only allowed to be off by 4 of what she has. Even though NOTHING in the states procedure manual says that. All it says is "Accurately record the systolic and diastolic pressure." Nothing about 4 icrements or anything like that.

    Blood pressure is pretty subjective isn't it? I've seen in practice 4 people take the same person's BP and come up with 4 separate readings. Yet she's going to FAIL me over that? Especially when the girl who went ahead of me fumbled through her whole test. Our instructor told me she though she was going to fail, but the tester passed her. Then me it was just "Nope, stop. YOu failed."

    I don't get it. The written test was so easy a moron could pass it, but on the skills they want to pick pick pick pick at little tiny trivial things for an $8/hr job. Do I have "IDIOT" tattooed on my forehead?

    Now I have one more chance to take the stupid thing, and if I fail that one, I have to retake the whole 105 hr training again. This is getting a little frustrating. I have worked my butt off for the last 4 months. Our DON told me that I'm a good aide and she loves having me. So have several other nurses, but some yo-yo from the state wants to come in and in 5 minutes tell me I don't know how to do my job.

    Is it going to be like this when I start RN school this fall?

    Tim
  2. 21 Comments so far...

  3. 1
    Quote from tmiller027
    I re-took my CNA skills test today. Had a different tester and thought everything would go fine.

    Everything wen't completely smooth, until I did the blood pressure. THe stethescope they use is one of those training ones with 2 earpieces. So I go to take it, and do everything okay, I listen and get 130/90 . the tester jsut says "Write it down" So I did, then she says "Now do it again." My instructor gave me a bizarre look and I could tell she was getting nervous because her breathing picked up. So I take it again, this time I get 140 /95. This time the tester just says "You've failed this procedure." She said on the first time, SHE got 136/88 then the second time got 132/92, and I'm only allowed to be off by 4 of what she has. Even though NOTHING in the states procedure manual says that. All it says is "Accurately record the systolic and diastolic pressure." Nothing about 4 icrements or anything like that.

    Blood pressure is pretty subjective isn't it? I've seen in practice 4 people take the same person's BP and come up with 4 separate readings. Yet she's going to FAIL me over that? Especially when the girl who went ahead of me fumbled through her whole test. Our instructor told me she though she was going to fail, but the tester passed her. Then me it was just "Nope, stop. YOu failed."

    I don't get it. The written test was so easy a moron could pass it, but on the skills they want to pick pick pick pick at little tiny trivial things for an $8/hr job. Do I have "IDIOT" tattooed on my forehead?

    Now I have one more chance to take the stupid thing, and if I fail that one, I have to retake the whole 105 hr training again. This is getting a little frustrating. I have worked my butt off for the last 4 months. Our DON told me that I'm a good aide and she loves having me. So have several other nurses, but some yo-yo from the state wants to come in and in 5 minutes tell me I don't know how to do my job.

    Is it going to be like this when I start RN school this fall?

    Tim
    There are many subjective moments when you are dealing with human beings. That's a big part of being a good nurse. To create the most healing situation in the eye of the beholder will enable you to provide effective care and comfort. Once I made it past my clinical instructors in nursing school, I had greater confidence to stand at someone's bedside. There is an art to this profession.........
    eske99 likes this.
  4. 1
    You said your instructor was getting nervous; was your iunstructor your "patient"? If so that would explain the increase in the B/P reading. Anxiety raises B/P. Anyway, whoever your "patient" was; blood pressure is a dynamic thing, constantly changing. In fact if you told me the exact same reading, I would have been concerned.
    sevensonnets likes this.
  5. 2
    I am familiar with the type of stethescope you are taliking about, with the two set of ear pieces attached to a single bell/diaphragm. I always had a hard time hearing through them in school.

    How frustrating for you. I guess the only thing you can do is practice, practice, practice until you have a chance to retest. Do make sure you and your evaluator are looking at the bp cuff's dial from the same angle. You will see different readings if you are not both looking straight at it.

    The few points difference is important. It can mean the difference between holding or giving a patient their medication. BUT, there are many other variables in technique that can give a false high or low bp that would affect decisions to give meds too. I see sloppy technique all the time. If the rest of your technique was just fine, I would you would have had another chance.

    Good luck to you tmiller. I hope your next exam is a breeze.
    Last edit by boggle on May 28, '04 : Reason: spelling errors
  6. 1
    At least in this state, it is a rule that the test taker get a BP measurement within so many increments of the test administrator's in order to pass. I'm not sure of the exact number of increments, but I am positive that it is a rule.

    From my experience the double scopes are crap. If you feel the quality of the scope is giving you a problem, perhaps you should considering buying one like it so that you can practice before the exam.

    If you are asking it the nursing instructors will fail you on a procedure for being just a bit off from the guidelines; my answer would be a big fat YES.
    Sally Lou likes this.
  7. 0
    I always believe taking a manual bp (ie with stethescope) would always have a varient as everyones hearing is different and what you hear may not necessary be the same as the next person taking the bp.
    Thats my pennys worth.

    Anna
  8. 0
    I hate those stupid double stethoscopes. I had a very similar experience in my first semester of nursing school, it was really stressful. If you are starting nursing school in the fall, by the end of Foundations you should be qualified to take a job as a PCT/CNA anyway so I would'nt stress that class too much, sooner or later you'll get the hang of it.
  9. 0
    THanks everyone.. The reason I'm so stressed is that I only have one more chance to take the test. If I fail that time, then I have to re-take the entire 105 hour CNA course. I don't know if my facility will put me through it agian,even though both times I failed was because of things the instructor didnt' even know about.


    I should also mention that while I'm sitting by the bedside taking my instructors bp, the tester was on the OTHER side of the bed, leaning over looking at the dial. Thats what I said when she failed me, how can she read the same thing I am when she's looking at it almost upside down?

    Anway, thanks for the support everyone.
  10. 0
    I'm supposed to take the CNA clinical test in a few weeks and I'm soooo nervous because of stories like yours. I've heard of people failing for things like you're talking about and less! How am I ever going to pass this stupid thing.

    Shel
  11. 0
    I failed my CNA test the first time too. Don't be so hard on yourself. The written part was super easy. Then I got to the skills portion. My tester had told the person who was my pt. to try and trick me. The skill that I screwed up was dressing a pt. with a weak side. I know that you are suppost to start with the weak side and I was concentrating really hard on doing the correct side. The tester told me that the pt. had a weak left side. The pt. gave me her right hand first and I just thought she was trying to help me but she was just trying to make me fail. I passed the second time around. No longer work in LTC but it was a good experence.


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