What do nurses really think of CNAs? - page 4

I have been working as a CNA in a LTC facility for the past four years. I am posting on this forum, because I would like some feedback from nurses. Recently at work, a survey was handed out to... Read More

  1. by   nataliaxtine
    some of the CNAs at the hospital I do clinical's at seem to have attitudes towards us student nurses & others are extremely nice & work very hard.
    I think they do do most of the "dirty" work & are under paid
  2. by   chadash
    Really appreciate this thread. Trying to figure out what makes a good CNA. I am trying to figure out what responsibilities take priority, when and what to report to the nurses.
    what, for instance, are really red flags in vital signs in post op pts? I get different answers from different nurses, probably because different circumstances call for different guidelines....but is there any role of thumb?
    Also, in a hospital, what constitutes a bath? I have some say I do too much of the bathing, then just the other day got called on not giving a bath soon enough. I was at the other end of the floor,and did not know the patient was incontinent. I feel badly if a nurse has to do the clean up work. also, getting all the vitals and documenting takes time too. I work constantly, and really dont want much down time, but still timing is every thing.
    whew! I take alot of care doing the IandOs, but still managed not to empty one foley (very little urine) in time for 1400 total.
  3. by   SaharaOnyxRN
    Quote from ccyrrus
    I have been working as a CNA in a LTC facility for the past four years. I am posting on this forum, because I would like some feedback from nurses.

    Recently at work, a survey was handed out to all the CNAs with a variety of different questions on it, to get our opinions on various job-related topics. We were encouraged to do this anonymously, so that Administration could get our true thoughts on these subject matters. After we all completed the survey and turned it in, the results were discussed with us in a meeting. If we chose to participate in a discussion, we could. If we chose to remain silent during the meeting, that was fine too. It was strictly voluntary.

    One of the interesting things that I learned was an answer to one of the questions: "Do you think nurses appreciate CNAs?" The answer was an overwhelming "No".

    But on the flip-side, the question was posed: "Do CNAs appreciate the nurses?" And the majority answered, "Yes".

    I would like to get some nurses' opinions, on how they really feel about nursing assistants. I know that, at times, I have been belittled, spoken down to, been made to feel stupid, and referred to as: "Just a CNA", by some nurses. On the other hand, I have worked with some great nurses. They praised me on a good job done, and even helped me out, a time or two, when things were hectic.

    Your TRUE opinion of nursing assistants, would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
    I respect and appreciate the CNAs that I work with. I really don't think that they feeling in mutual on their behalf. It seems like when asking a CNA to do something for me, they always seem to grumble and look at me like saying, "Why don't you do it?" and I don't understand that, but then, I can understand it, too.

    I look at it this way: As a nurse, I can do your job entirely, but you can't do the things that my job calls for. Sure, i can take every resident to the bathroom, shower them, turn them, etc. And i do many of those things. But what a lot of CNAs don't realize is that even though a lot of our work is not physical in nature, we do have a rather large responsibility. We have people's lives in our hands. We have to chart, do treatments, do admissions, pass medicines. My appreciate the CNAs that work with me every day. But, I don't think they appreciate what we, as nurses, do. They think we do nothing. But anyone that has ever been a nurse can tell you, there are days that I wish I could be a CNA only and not have to fool with the perils of nursing.

    My wish is for you to take this away with you: You are very appreciated by nurses. We could not do it all, and we definitely could not do it without you. Be encouraged and don't resent the nurse. She is often stressed and at times may forget to say thank you. Teamwork crosses all boundaries. No nurse is ever "too good" to help you, if you would just ask. But don't be offended that at times, she may have other priorities that may keep her from being able to assist you.

    Love ya, and remember, be encouraged.
  4. by   UM Review RN
    Quote from chadash
    Really appreciate this thread. Trying to figure out what makes a good CNA. I am trying to figure out what responsibilities take priority, when and what to report to the nurses.
    what, for instance, are really red flags in vital signs in post op pts? I get different answers from different nurses, probably because different circumstances call for different guidelines....but is there any role of thumb?
    Also, in a hospital, what constitutes a bath? I have some say I do too much of the bathing, then just the other day got called on not giving a bath soon enough. I was at the other end of the floor,and did not know the patient was incontinent. I feel badly if a nurse has to do the clean up work. also, getting all the vitals and documenting takes time too. I work constantly, and really dont want much down time, but still timing is every thing.
    whew! I take alot of care doing the IandOs, but still managed not to empty one foley (very little urine) in time for 1400 total.
    Chad, this is such a great idea for a thread, I'm going to start one on this topic right this minute!

    I'll put the link in as soon's it's posted.
    http://allnurses.com/forums/f8/what-...se-190397.html
    Last edit by UM Review RN on Nov 17, '06 : Reason: added the link
  5. by   grace90
    I love the hard-working CNA's and will help them out when I can by doing my own foleys, sugars, toiletting, etc. But the lump of lead I worked with last night needed a good smack down. He just didn't answer call lights, left someone on the bedpan waaay too long and just generally sat on his rear most of the night.
  6. by   brown eyed girl
    I personally love the STNA'S I work with and I know that they love me back by the way they act if they know that Im going to take a census day. They say to me" OH No! Where do you think you are going?! Well, since you might leave, who is gonna take your place?" I know that the way we feel about each other is for one reason: R-E-S-P-E-C-T. They have always known from day one that I was a STNA for 7 years and that just last year I was doing their job. I ALWAYS refer to them as my team members. I help them to put someone to bed if they need help and no one else is available, even during my med pass, but they respect that, and they know that I have their back and their's nothing I won't do for them and vice versa. I actually listen to what they have to say, I diffuse minor conflicts between them and the residents' by listening to what each party has to say in the presence of both individuals and come up with a solution that both can agree on peacefully. I make sure that when we come together to take care of the residents', we have a good time and a relaxed time doing it; there's no need to come to work in a hostile environment. We spend the majority of our time together than with our families, so why not have a good time while we're together? A CNA/STNA is worth his/her weight in gold literally. I have always understood from day one that without them, my job would be more impossible to do.
  7. by   Dalzac
    I love the ones that helped me They would do I & O's, vs,and some even did fsbs if they were trained to. When they needed help I would help them if I could. A good CNA was priceless. And, of course, there wer also worthless ones.
  8. by   nursemike
    Good CNAs are priceless, but there are plenty of bad examples around to make you appreciate the good ones.

    There is no part of patient care I consider beneath me--I knew what the job was when I took it. But darned if it isn't frustrating to get called during a dressing change to go help a patient toilet because your aide is on break. And it sure does slow down a med pass to have to get water for each of your patients, which can be frustrating when you see several aides sitting around the nurses' station, gossipping or reading magazines. And you have to wonder why the aide who never hesitates to call you to help with a bath never has time to help when you've got a stroke patient climbing over the bedrails or someone who needs a bedpan right now.
    I, too, vowed never to refer to, or even think of someone as "just an aide."
    I got over that about the second time I had an aide try to second guess me or tell me what to do. But I have nothing but for respect for those who do their jobs.
    PS Funny thing: it's just about always the crappy aides who don't respect nurses. I guess that makes sense. If they don't respect themselves, why would they respect someone else? But, again, if you don't respect yourself, don't hold your breath to be respected by others.
    Last edit by nursemike on Nov 18, '06
  9. by   cant_not
    I was/am an aide, I know how hard it is. At a facility I worked at recently, the DON brought her dog to work every day, "for the residents." Anyway, when they dog decided to use the bathroom (usually on the floor) she made aides clean it up.
  10. by   MidnightTang
    Quote from chadash
    Really appreciate this thread. Trying to figure out what makes a good CNA. I am trying to figure out what responsibilities take priority, when and what to report to the nurses.
    what, for instance, are really red flags in vital signs in post op pts? I get different answers from different nurses, probably because different circumstances call for different guidelines....but is there any role of thumb?
    Also, in a hospital, what constitutes a bath? I have some say I do too much of the bathing, then just the other day got called on not giving a bath soon enough. I was at the other end of the floor,and did not know the patient was incontinent. I feel badly if a nurse has to do the clean up work. also, getting all the vitals and documenting takes time too. I work constantly, and really dont want much down time, but still timing is every thing.
    whew! I take alot of care doing the IandOs, but still managed not to empty one foley (very little urine) in time for 1400 total.
    It takes a long time to get to the point where you can get everything done on time. I think time management and knowing what to report are the two most difficult things to learn as a CNA. It doesn't help either when you report something to a nurse they treat you like an imbecile for reporting it (this only happens rare occasions, but it happens.) Important rules of thumb are: 1. Have a thick skin, just because ONE nurse doesn't want to hear what you have to say doesn't mean it isn't important. 2. Don't let anyone be critical of you for doing "too much." These people most likely don't want you setting standard higher. 3. You'll never have your timing down perfect. Don't let little setbacks get you down.
  11. by   HididiScribbler
    I'm just a nursing student, but I thought I'd stick my head in anyway and give my two cents...
    When I first started nursing school, I worked more closely with the CNAs, since I couldn't pass meds, chart assesments (although I did them) or do much RN work. So, I learned SO much from some CNAs! And I had no idea how much work it is to be a CNA, before I started nursing school. You guys have so many patients, and I was so overwhelmed at first with one or two! So, I definitely have respect for CNAs, we need you!
    However...some of the people who have treated me very badly as a student have been CNAs. Once I started doing meds, and having other priorities, many of them didn't seem to understand that my priorities were not the same as theirs, and that I wasn't trying to be lazy if I delegated something to them, I just had so many other things to do now. Many of them treated me as if I was far beneath them...
    I did try VERY hard to not to act as if I was above the CNAs, because I know I'm not! And I know that even when I'm an RN, I will not be "better" than the CNAs. I just wish that they could've shown me the same respect that I tried to show them.
  12. by   CritterLover
    Quote from ccyrrus
    one of the interesting things that i learned was an answer to one of the questions: "do you think nurses appreciate cnas?" the answer was an overwhelming "no".

    but on the flip-side, the question was posed: "do cnas appreciate the nurses?" and the majority answered, "yes".


    you know what? i bet if you did the same survey with the nurses, you would find similar results. that is, that the nurses appreciate the cnas, but that they don't think the cnas appreciate them.

    it tends to go that way when you have a job that is demanding and keeps you really busy. you appreciate your coworkers, you know how much easier they make your job, but you just don't have time to show it.

    a simple "thank you" doesn't always show just how much we appreciate each other, sometimes it seems automatic. sometimes it might even seem sarcastic -- you know, when the "thank you" comes with a tone of irritation. and if you're really busy, you might not even see each other to say thank you.

    i'm currently an rn, but i've been a cna. yes, i think most of the nurses appreciated me back then. i don't directly work with cnas now, but i know that i appreciate all help, as long as they are actually working. those who sit and surf the internet, or talk on their cell phone, while others around them are working, arn't very appreciated. be it cna, secretary, or other nurses.

  13. by   prettypaws
    I just recently started working LTC and this is my first experience working with CNAS. Frankly, I'm a little uncomfortable. Those on my shift constantly thank me for doing anything that helps them in anyway. These CNAS are wonderful and have taught me more about what's going on at the facility than the other nurses. It makes me wonder what kind of nurses they are used to working with. On the flip side, one of my duties is to do the shift following mine's assignments. These aids are HORRIBLE to me. I finally had to submit a complaint after they made me cry the first time I did the assignemtn out of orientation. Now, they don't yell at me. They just say mean things without ever actually addressing me. If I ever was asked to work that shift, I'd turn them down flat!

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