New CNA job on orthopedic floor - what to expect?

  1. Hey, I just got a job as a CNA on an orthopedic floor in a major hospital in my area. I am a future RN student and I am SO excited but I have no idea what to expect. Can anyone provide any insight as to what I've gotten myself into? The only experience I have were from my CNA clinicals in LTC and working as a home health aide. Thanks!
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   pdpeanut
    Anyone care to help me? I'm just wondering about what my day-to-day is going to be like? I would REALLY appreciate any help.
  4. by   ava'smomRN
    hi, congrats on your new job! i worked on an ortho floor for a little over a year. day to day was really dependant on post-ops. where i worked we got a lot of hip and knee surgeries. when the patients would come up to the floor we had to monitor the vitals for about 4hours. we were responsible for setting up traction for new hip fractures, appling ice packs, putting cpm machines on for knee patients, picking up supplies from central supply, helping patients get into chairs, to the bathroom.... we did a lot. if you have any more questions let me know. i hope this helps!
  5. by   itsme2005
    Congrats.
    Im starting out as a cna also. Please keep us up to date!
  6. by   pdpeanut
    Hey thanks for your help, I really appreciate it. This week I am in the middle of hospital orientation and it's EXTREMELY overwhelming, but I start on the floor on Thursday, so I'm excited about that. Any advice for me? I'm so nervous that the staff is going to be rude to me and think I'm incompetent just because I'm new!
    Thanks.
  7. by   RN and Mommy
    I work on an ortho floor (for 3 1/2 years) as a CNA and I am also a nursing student (May 2006). We begin our day with trying to get our baths done. Most of our patients are up for meals, so we do that. With the hip patients there are many things to remember (don't bend over past 90 degrees, don't let your knee roll in, don't cross your legs). With both the hips and the knees some physicians has specific orders regarding weight bearing status, so you have to be aware of that when you get the patients out of bed. The knee replacent patients, we put them in their CPM machines three times a day (during the dayshift) for 1-2 hours at a time. When they are up in the chair they are continously doing flexion/extension positioning with a leg lifter and rolling footstool. And, of course there are the frequent potty breaks. It never fails that once you get someone all hooked into their CPM with the footpumps and everything on, they say..."Oh, I should've gone to the bathroom". Always, always, always, ask them before putting them back to bed!

    Usually around 10-11am our new surgicals start rolling in and that involves vital signs (every half hour x 3, then every hour x 4), coughing and deep breathing, incentive spirometry, and turning.

    It's a great place to work...but remember, get help lifting if you need it! It can also be a very heavy back-breaking place to work!

    Good Luck!

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