why are cna's treated like they are stupid and replaceable? - page 8

it seems to me that CNA's, esp. in long term care, get treated as if they don't know how to do anything, are overworked, unappreciated, and underpaid. This one nurse about drives me up the wall. You... Read More

  1. by   Nancy428
    Thank God I'm going for LVN.....and keeping my eye on the prize...also have put in a few applications at the local hospital.I just can't stay where I'm not appreciated.
  2. by   Luv2BAnurse
    Some of what I have read are extreme. Just remember that while a nurse can do certain jobs, the CNA cannot. If a nurse gets caught up as I did once, helping a CNA by doing a bath for her, the nurse gets behind, and the CNA cannot help the nurse pass meds, assess, document, return phone calls, etc. If I can do a "CNA" job quickly, I do it. Wiping a face, or changing a sheet takes less time that finding the CNA to do it, and should be done by whomever finds it. Don't think it's just CNA's who feel disrespected. I've had an MD empty a foley from CBI into the container, leave it on the floor, filled to the BRIM...and came out and asked me to measure it. No, wait...TOLD me to measure it. I went in the room, measured, emptied, and documented. When I got back out I asked him to not fill it all the way up like that, it made it difficult to maneuver without spilling. He laughed. I didn't.
    By the way, I was a CNA once too. I decided I wanted more, and went back to school. I love being a nurse, but as with any job, there is more than meets the eye.
  3. by   pink2blue1
    I'm a CNA in a hospital on a med-surg floor. While our nurses truly love and appreciate all of us (They fought for us recently when the CEO wanted to get rid of us) They know what an asset we are to the team. However since the nursing ratios changed and nurses now have 5 alone, we don't do tem nursing anymore. So on my floor there are 31 patients and 2 CNA's. Most days there are 2 CNA's, but there are days we have only 1. We work 12 hour shifts like the RN's and they give us an assignment of 10 patients. the Charge asks the RN and of course the CNA's get all the heavy or total care patients. CNA's on my floor are responsible for doing vitals on half the floor if there are 2 of us and the whole floor if there is one of us. Then we have to chart them all. Of the 10 we are assigned to we need to bathe, change the beds, do I&O's, you know the usual stuff. But even though we are assigned 10, the RN's always ask us to help with the others and we do. I guess in every place there are good RN's who appreciate us and then there are the ones who don't think to highly of us and still more others that claim they don't do "aid work"

    One thing that gets me is that in my LVN program, it;s required you be a CNA to go through the program. Obviously not working, you just have to go through CNA school and get your certificate. A few of the girls in my program say they aren't working now as a CNA because "They can't stand doing bed pans and all that gross stuff" Well i say Wake up! You will have to do those things as an RN! Unless you "don't do aid work" LOL!

    I think CNA is a good path to becoming a Nurse if you want to and I am glad that i have been doing it for 3 years now
  4. by   spell
    I read most of the replies about how good the CNA's are doing and should be paid more, and in my opinion that is true, but more nurses should feel that way and speak up to help the CNA's. I am a CNA and a full time RN student and I worked in a Nursing Home, and our DON always said how important we are and how much help we are to our face. Just one on one conversations, but when the time came in meetings we were never doing enough and it was never right. She never took the time to lend a hand, and when a patient asked for something she always came looking for a CNA.
    I know she told me she was an LPN at one time and knows how CNA's are treated,(this was to my face) but she must have forgot because she put us all down if it benefited her.
    I had to quit because the closer it gets to my graduation date the more hassle I was getting about working and studing on the job. When at first(when noone thought I would make it), it was alright.
    I hope everyday that I don't forget where I came from, and I promise to help when I am needed, and that means standing up for the smaller, under paid workers.
    Mona a future advocate for CNA's
  5. by   LPN_mn
    Quote from punnit_square
    From my personal experience, I am soon to be an RN (one semester left), I work in LTC, the LPNs that I work with have a complex in general against RN students (we even have a med student who will be MD in about 4 more years working there and they have the same complex against her). From what is being taught to me in school in regards to LPN and CNA 1. LPN is just a step above CNA 2. Make the LPN and especially the CNA your best working buddy . . . they can make you or break you 3. definitely in the LTC setting, listen to the CNA, they deal with the patient more than you do and see more than you see. It is a shame that there is the "inferiority/superiority complexes". We all need each other to do our job effectively. And for the nurses who don't like to help and are too good for it; they better watch out because a former CNA will be their supervisor one day

    I cannot believe that you are being taught that an LPN is just a glorified CNA and even more appalled that you would actually repeat it. You have a lot to learn and it may be one of those people who are "one step above a CNA" that teaches you one of the most valuable lessons that you will ever have the opportunity to learn. I really am at a loss of words right now and so very upset that RN student are taught to look down on the LPN like that. No wonder there is such animosity and disrespect within our profession.
  6. by   Sue7573
    I would like to say though that bad or good attitudes come from every direction.
    For instance. At the LTC I work at our building was bought by the hospital in town. That hospital also has a long term care floor on it and we have been merged as one. The CNA's that work out on the floor (not LTC) seem to have the attitude that they are too good to work in LTC. Not long ago a friend of mine was in the hospital she and I were talking to her CNA. (CNA not knowing that I work in same facility) My friend asked her how was being a CNA that she was looking to work while she was in school and wondered if being a CNA at that hospital would be a good job or not. The girl said that it was fine. But if they were hiring that it would only be in LTC or other building and that if it were her she WOULD NOT work in LTC she didn't mind bathing kids (but most of the time the kids parent did that) but she sure in the hell ain't going to touch old people and "if I can get out of it I will not bathe any one else either". and on the main floor of the hospital they call themselves techs not aids or cna.
    I asked her what did she do as a "tech" she said well I get vital signs and do I & O but that is about it. I can't feed any one that is gross and I go play with the babies. The diatery girls pass and pick up trays.

    I know that one of the CMA's in my building was admitted into the hospital and she just happened to be put in the same room with one of our residents. and the CMA said that no one fed her brkfst and no one come in to feed lunch. so The cma asked the tech if they were going to feed her and the girl said her family will do it (res has no family, her and her mother came to our LTC together and her mother died 9 years ago) CMA was telling tech that the resident didn't have family and the tech turned around and walked out of the room. CMA went over and fed the resident. SHe over heard the tech saying thank god she fed that freak from other building........ CMA turned in Tech but didn't do any good.

    There are several nurses that will work a double and on second shift and be a CNA if we are short.

    I realize that there are so many things a CNA cannot do to help a nurse vs. a nurse helping a cna. I would never even let a nurse do more for me than just to fix a light cord or wipe a face. i apprciate everything a nurse does for the resident and for me.

    Sue
  7. by   lovingtheunloved
    Quote from Sue7573
    I would like to say though that bad or good attitudes come from every direction.
    For instance. At the LTC I work at our building was bought by the hospital in town. That hospital also has a long term care floor on it and we have been merged as one. The CNA's that work out on the floor (not LTC) seem to have the attitude that they are too good to work in LTC. Not long ago a friend of mine was in the hospital she and I were talking to her CNA. (CNA not knowing that I work in same facility) My friend asked her how was being a CNA that she was looking to work while she was in school and wondered if being a CNA at that hospital would be a good job or not. The girl said that it was fine. But if they were hiring that it would only be in LTC or other building and that if it were her she WOULD NOT work in LTC she didn't mind bathing kids (but most of the time the kids parent did that) but she sure in the hell ain't going to touch old people and "if I can get out of it I will not bathe any one else either". and on the main floor of the hospital they call themselves techs not aids or cna.
    I asked her what did she do as a "tech" she said well I get vital signs and do I & O but that is about it. I can't feed any one that is gross and I go play with the babies. The diatery girls pass and pick up trays.

    I know that one of the CMA's in my building was admitted into the hospital and she just happened to be put in the same room with one of our residents. and the CMA said that no one fed her brkfst and no one come in to feed lunch. so The cma asked the tech if they were going to feed her and the girl said her family will do it (res has no family, her and her mother came to our LTC together and her mother died 9 years ago) CMA was telling tech that the resident didn't have family and the tech turned around and walked out of the room. CMA went over and fed the resident. SHe over heard the tech saying thank god she fed that freak from other building........ CMA turned in Tech but didn't do any good.

    There are several nurses that will work a double and on second shift and be a CNA if we are short.

    I realize that there are so many things a CNA cannot do to help a nurse vs. a nurse helping a cna. I would never even let a nurse do more for me than just to fix a light cord or wipe a face. i apprciate everything a nurse does for the resident and for me.

    Sue
    See, that's what I don't get. Why be a CNA if you hate it? It sure as hell isn't for the money.
  8. by   jhowirn
    I'm sorry you've had that experience, and as an RN, I can honestly say that I love CNA's! You guys are such an asset in any patient care environment, where it never hurts to have as many extra sets of hands and eyes as we can get. You are also correct, that in any patient care environment, patient safety comes first and that NO ONE is above helping a patient to the bathroom, changing linen, emptying a bedpan, etc. THANK YOU for what you do!!!!
  9. by   jhowirn
    Quote from LPN_mn
    I cannot believe that you are being taught that an LPN is just a glorified CNA and even more appalled that you would actually repeat it. You have a lot to learn and it may be one of those people who are "one step above a CNA" that teaches you one of the most valuable lessons that you will ever have the opportunity to learn. I really am at a loss of words right now and so very upset that RN student are taught to look down on the LPN like that. No wonder there is such animosity and disrespect within our profession.
    I am ashamed to admit that I used to hold a similar viewpoint on LPN's (that there status is somewhere between CNA and RN), until I had the opportunity at my former place of employment to work with some really OUTSTANDING LPN's who were nurses before I was even born, and had all those years of rich experiences, knowledge, and wisdom to pass on to me. My working with them was truly a blessing. No LPN's and CNA's don't get the respect they deserve, which is a tragedy, because at the end of the day, we're all on the same team.
  10. by   panurse101
    I know exactly what your saying. I was a cna for about 9 years before becoming a RN. I have never forgot what it was like to be a cna. They are the ones that work physically the hardest. If it wasnt for them, nurses wouldnt be able to do their jobs, facilities wouldnt be open and operating. When I want to know something about a resident ... I ask a cna.
    Tracy
  11. by   unknown99
    CNA's, just like any other healthcare worker, can be a dime a dozen. However..... a good CNA, or other healthcare worker, can be worth their weight in gold!!
    I am an RN, and I value my CNA's as if they are gold. I love them dearly. They make my job so much easier and better. it is just like ay other profession... there are the good and the bad. The good usually outshine the bad, but people will usually remember the bad first. It is just human nature.
  12. by   Mandylpn
    Quote from trasestry
    I know exactly what your saying. I was a cna for about 9 years before becoming a RN. I have never forgot what it was like to be a cna. They are the ones that work physically the hardest. If it wasnt for them, nurses wouldnt be able to do their jobs, facilities wouldnt be open and operating. When I want to know something about a resident ... I ask a cna.
    Tracy
    I totally agree, I think CNA's have the hardest job of all, very physically demanding and a lot of times disrespected and misunderstood regarding the difficulty of their jobs. I was a CNA for a few years after high school, now I am an LPN, I could never handle working as a CNA now, it is so hard on you physically. Thanks for all you do! You are all the best!
  13. by   debroh1
    I was a nurse aide for 12 years before going to school and have been an LPN for 2 years now. I always thought the LPN had it so easy till I actually became one. I remember 1 nurse in particular who I thought was the same way (lazy, didn't want to help out, and seemed to have a bad attitude towards the NA). Then when I became an LPN and of course stayed at the same facility guess who trained me. It was then that I realized how mentally draining her job was, how even though NA's have a physically demanding job (and yes stressful too) the nurse has the responsibilty of the entire floor. Which entails dealing with the dr., families, residents, staff disputes, lab, pharmacy, RN manager, incident reports, med pass, treatments, tube feedings, endless mountains of required paperwork, charting, etc.. that comes with that little bit of more money. I may not leave at the end of the night physically tired, but I am mentally exhausted. Then I spend the ride home trying to rememnber if I did this or that, and if I didn't how much trouble is that going to be. So then I get home and call back to work to find out if I did remember to do everything. That same nurse who I dispised became my best friend. She was the one nurse who knew all the ins and outs and knew how to dot the i and cross the t's. Many a night I called her at home and she always knew the answer to the problem, and who to call what to do. And while training me I realized that she NEVER took a break (lunch or otherwise) came in just a little bit early and left only after everything was taken care of. You never know till you walk in someone else's shoes. Yes there will always be the bad with the good. But NA's can never realize the burden of our job, and the responsibilty, until you actually do it. I always thought I would be the nurse to help the NA's out. (feed, toilet and help out) but at the end of the shift they've had all their breaks and are leaving on time. I've not had one break and am staying over to finish up my job so that I don't get in trouble. You get good nurses with the bad just as you get good NA' in the mix also. Just try to realize that even though that LPN acts like she doesn't want to help out, maybe there is more of a reason.

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