Replaced by Certified Medication Aide! - page 4

by ladyjanelpn | 12,639 Views | 54 Comments

Yes, fellow LPNs, its happening here in Northeast Ohio! Trained and oriented CMA and was then given extreme partime hours(as were the other LPNs) while CMA gets 40hrs and benefits! And of course, they are paid less per hour. The... Read More


  1. 3
    Quote from BrandonLPN
    I think passing meds SHOULD be something only nurses can do. So if today we say it's okay for UAP to pass meds, what will happen tomorrow? Will they say dressing changes take too much time and train CNAs to be "certified wound techs"? Why not certify aides to suction trachs? Straight cath? If they can pass scheduled pills now, it's only a matter of time before nursing home administrators push through legislation allowing CMAs to give injections, or give PRNs. Why not just delegate *all* of the "tasky" stuff licensed nurses do to UAP? Is all we need licesnsed nurses for is assessments and supervision, how many nurses will LTC facilities actually need?

    Be careful what you wish for. If we give those at the top an inch, they will replace as many of us (LPNs AND RNs) as they can with $10.00 an hour techs.
    This is example of when the "slippery slope" fallacy does NOT apply. I agree with you 100%, Brandon. I hope that when my class graduates, we won't be facing the uphill battle against "permissive licensure" like some of you did when you were new nurses. Remember when licensure wasn't mandatory? It is a terrifying thought; people could just see a classified ad seeking an RN and apply if they thought they had the "skills." The only catch was that the person couldn't call themselves an RN. Same thing is happening now. Every state has mandatory licensure, but it seems like new job titles are being invented every day for UAP. Pretty soon, I'll be a CNA XII and I'll be able to do everything an RN can do! Only I just can't call myself an RN.
    HazelLPN, OCNRN63, and lindarn like this.
  2. 3
    Quote from netglow
    Oh I don't think there was any down putting going on. When we talk about reality, those that want to feel down, will try hard to get put down even if they have to do it to themselves, you know?
    Exactly. I never said I hated CMA, or that it's the CMA's fault that facilities are shifting to a "cost-effective model." In fact, I am one!

    I just do not think our training is adequate enough to perform a previously nursing-only function. Yes, we CMA can just blindly hand out pills like items on a checklist. We do not have the judgment to assess the patient's condition, which would decide whether to hold or give the med.

    Someone here said that you can be a nurse in a year, as though that somehow makes nurses non-professionals. I don't think that is a very conclusive statement, given the amount of time LPN spend doing the required science classes and clinical hours.

    LPN programs around here require 2 semesters (at least) of pre-requisites, which is one full academic year. Then, students have another full calendar year of nursing coursework. My brother is in an LPN program, and he will have spent 1,566 hours in clinical by the time he graduates. How many clinical hours does a CMA have? When I got my CMA, I spent (get this!): ZERO HOURS in clinical.

    EDIT: Some of you have stated that there is no evidence that CMA make more med errors than professional nurses. I did examine some of the studies that were done, and it is true. However, this seems to be the case because there is still some LPN/RN supervision going on.

    I refer back to the OP's post that he/she was indeed replaced. What is the error rate going to look like when LPN/RN are no longer utilized in such settings? Can we depend on people who cannot exercise nursing judgment to make nursing decisions, if professional nurses are continually being replaced by unlicensed personnel?
    Last edit by nguyency77 on Feb 3, '13 : Reason: Added something. :)
    AheleneLPN, nursel56, and lindarn like this.
  3. 1
    what you need is better funding, so you could hire more nurses.
    lindarn likes this.
  4. 5
    Quote from Susie2310
    While some of the public may not care, some do. I think that those that do often have a hard time even finding someone to voice their concerns to, let alone being heard and receiving any kind of corrective action in response. To give a personal experience: When a close family member and I observed the MA taking my family member's blood pressure incorrectly in the doctor's office, we mentioned this to the doctor. Our concern was courteously received, and the MA continued to take my family member's blood pressure just as incorrectly on following visits. We concluded it was not worth our time to pursue our concern again with the doctor, but we made sure to bring my family member's own blood pressure readings in each time to discuss with the doctor. If the doctor was tempted to make a medical decision based on the MA's reading that was not consistent with our blood pressure data, then we referred to our data. But without me, an RN, to advocate for my family member, medical decisions would have been made on the basis of incorrect readings by the MA.

    I believe it is difficult for the public, without medical/nursing training, to even perceive that their quality of care is being compromised, and even if they sense or know it is happening, it is not easy to find someone to complain to who will take action on their behalf. At the large medical practice we go to there is no office of the patient advocate or patient complaints person present in the local main office that I know of. One can take a concern up with their doctor, or there is an address one can write to if one has a complaint about their medical care. There is a number to call for the practice manager who is based on another medical campus.

    I also believe patients are afraid of alienating their doctors/nurses by saying anything negative about their care, and being ill and in need of medical care is not a strong position from which to complain. Without medical/nursing knowledge, and with illness/infirmity and often no-one to advocate for them, the public is in a weak position. I often think that as a patient or family member, one needs medical/nursing training, and probably legal training.
    I remember one time when I was at the doctor's office for something and the MA come back to do "patient teaching," and the information was lacking, to say the least. I usually don't throw the nurse card, but I said something to the doctor about her patient education. The doctor seemed surprised because she said she hadn't told her to come back to talk to me.

    I do agree with you that patients may feel intimidated and afraid of the consequences of speaking up. It's a shame; patients should feel that they have someone with their best interests when it comes to health care.
    HazelLPN, chevyv, lindarn, and 2 others like this.
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    I don't think saying I'm against CMAs replacing LPNs is putting anyone down. I will admit I have an obvious bias..... Being an LPN.

    I should also clarify that I'm not against CMAs in an assisted living or adult foster care setting. I just think skilled nursing is too high an acuity level for meds to be passed by UAP.
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    And I want to add that even though I usually function as a "med nurse" and spend most of my time passing pills, I still serve a vital "nursing only" role that a CMA could never fill. When I pass pills to 49 people, that's like 49 little assessments on each resident. My RN supervisor doesn't pass medications or do treatments and she only interacts with a fraction of the residents on a daily basis. I've caught so many potential disasters during my med pass that a CNA would never catch. Pulmonary embolisms, extreme bowel obstructions, changes in moods or behaviors CNAs don't see. You lose that when you cut the LPN med nurse out of the picture. You're left with residents who have one RN and a bunch of unlicensed aides. I *know* my residents would be worse off if a CMA passed their meds rather than me.
    ybanurse, chevyv, AheleneLPN, and 3 others like this.
  7. 0
    Really!?! See an ad and become a nurse like when we were new grads? I about had my tea coming out of my nose reading that drivel. Look back in the early 1900's perhaps. Zowie but people here say all sorts of preposterous things. And a CNA XII....never heard of such a thing. You're NOT a nurse and you're NOT capable of performing as such.
    Last edit by CapeCodMermaid on Feb 3, '13 : Reason: Typo
  8. 3
    Quote from CapeCodMermaid
    Really!?! See an ad and become a nurse like when we were new grads? I about had my tea coming out of my nose reading that drivel. Look back in the early 1900's perhaps. Zowie but people here say all sorts of preposterous things. And a CNA XII....never heard of such a thing. You're NOT a nurse and you're NOT capable of performing as such.
    I'm pretty sure that "CNA XII" comment was sarcasm.
    lindarn, nursel56, and morte like this.
  9. 0
    Describing a nursing program as a finite time period is becoming less functional with each passing day, anyway. It never told you very much, especially when we include Canadian programs in the mix but there are just too many options and individual people pacing their education. It's usually used to put somebody else down, as well.
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    In the years I have been an LPN it become increasing apparent that the nursing profession must be one of the most abuse profession. Where else does a person have so much at stake, i.e. potential to lose license, etc., yet expected to do more and more with less. Don't make an error because it's unacceptable and can cost you everything you have worked for. I feel that nurses need to unite and demand better working conditions and protection. Unfortunately, I'm not the one to orgainze such an effort, I don't have the skills, dipolmacy, etc.

    Sad.
    frodo-dog, LTCNS, nursel56, and 3 others like this.


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