How much do sitters make? And how to qualify?

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    I am currently a pre-nursing student, but I would like to work as a sitter while I am in my program. Ideally, I would like to work as a tech, but I don't have the money for training. I am thinking that I don't need to be trained as a sitter (other than the obligatory orientation process). Does anyone have any suggestions on how to put my best foot forward while applying for a sitter's position? What, for example, should I stress? Customer service skills? I am coming from a secretarial background, so I need some pointers on what skill sets need to be emphasized for a hospital/sitters position.

    Also - what's the hourly rate for sitters? Although I would like to get my feet in the door, I need a liveable wage.
  2. 20 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    I'm a sitter, but I'm also a CNA. I became a sitter through a agency that staffs sitters for one of the hospitals in my area. It is quite hard to get into any type of patient care without being licensed as a cna/pct. However, I do know that once you enter nursing school, you can work in the hospitals(well, hospitals that allow it) as a cna/pct without actually having the certification. It would be very wise to get certified because it opens so much more doors. But if you get an interview(whether you're certified or not), just emphasize customer service skills and hospitality.

    Being a sitter pays me only $9 a hour and I don't do it frequently to be honest. I also work part-time in a nursing home for $8.50. The only liveable wage I can see someone having being a cna is if you work in a hospital. But most hospitals want you to have experience first. That is why I work in a nursing home and sit on the side too. Nevertheless, being a CNA is a great experience and really gives you a leg up against the rest of your competition.

    Good luck!
  4. 0
    Quote from karamarie91
    I'm a sitter, but I'm also a CNA. I became a sitter through a agency that staffs sitters for one of the hospitals in my area. It is quite hard to get into any type of patient care without being licensed as a cna/pct. However, I do know that once you enter nursing school, you can work in the hospitals(well, hospitals that allow it) as a cna/pct without actually having the certification. It would be very wise to get certified because it opens so much more doors. But if you get an interview(whether you're certified or not), just emphasize customer service skills and hospitality.
    I guess that's why I never got a call back for the sitter's job I applied to months ago.

    So would it be crazy to even hope that I can find a hospital that would just train me as a tech even though I don't have any certifications? A girl in one of my classes told me she was hired that way (but she had an inside contact). I've never been able to find anyone else who was hired 'off the street' into a tech position.

    Thanks for your response. I've been trying for all kinds of hospital jobs - patient sitter, unit clerk, unit secretary - and I've gotten no bites. Now I see a tech job that states it has no other requirements except for training (but it appears that it is on the site training). I want to go for it, but I wonder if that's really smart considering I have no certifications. Hmm...
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    Well, you may be better off getting the certifications. It really helps in the long run. It helps when you start nursing school, it's a nice side job to have, and you open more doors for the tech job. I have an interview at a hospital for a tech job tommorrow and I got it just by cold calling a nursing manager(i was so nervous lol) on some random med-surg floor and telling her that I was a nursing student and interested in working as a tech in their hospital. She then reffered me to a nursing recruiter who later called me for an interview. So now I have a panel interview with a nursing manager and some of the other staff. So, in general, I believe these days it helps to know someone. I got my nursing home job through volunteering first and I got my sitter job by speaking to a former coworker who use to work at the agency. So networking helps alot! Tell everyone you're looking to advance yourself. Sometimes the oppoutunity is right there, you just got to find the person it's connected to.

    And I know how you feel about filling out these hospital job applications. But don't give up! If you read some of the posts in this PCT forum, you'll see some posters have been applying for months or even a whole year before getting an interview, not alone a job! Good luck!
  6. 0
    Quote from karamarie91
    Well, you may be better off getting the certifications. It really helps in the long run. It helps when you start nursing school, it's a nice side job to have, and you open more doors for the tech job. I have an interview at a hospital for a tech job tommorrow.

    And I know how you feel about filling out these hospital job applications. But don't give up! If you read some of the posts in this PCT forum, you'll see some posters have been applying for months or even a whole year before getting an interview, not alone a job! Good luck!
    I'm going to do just that. I've just gotta scrimp and save for the certifications. But I knew your advice was true - I was just hoping to find someone to say, "yea...I got a job with no certifications."

    And to you. Good luck tomorrow!
  7. 0
    Hi.. I currently work at a hospital in NJ and I am a nursing student. I am going to give you some great advice! Keep your secretarial job for now. Volunteer on your first aid squad where they will train you at no cost to become an emt. After you have pt experience reapply to all the tech jobs. Trust me you'll get a job. That's how I did it .
  8. 0
    Here's another thought, I work as a CNA at a hospital and they also hire nurse techs after they complete their first semester of the nursing program. You also can test for the CNA in most states after you complete Intro to Healthcare.

    Check out You Tube they have videos for all the CNA skills from making a bed to giving a bath. It will give you a distinct advantage in clinicials and help you be confident in interviews for Tech and CNA positions.

    Whichever route you take make sure you list your Pre-Req classes on every application. As soon as I passed my CNA test I applied at a Home Health Agency and made $10 an hour and two months later I was hired by the hospital for $12. And this is a right to work state that isn't noted for high salaries but decent jobs are out there.

    Now I have myself in an excellent position of moving right in to an RN position when I finally finish the program..............somedays it feels like forever. But I am blessed to have a good job that I enjoy while I'm in school.


  9. 0
    Quote from hope63
    here's another thought, i work as a cna at a hospital and they also hire nurse techs after they complete their first semester of the nursing program. you also can test for the cna in most states after you complete intro to healthcare.

    check out you tube they have videos for all the cna skills from making a bed to giving a bath. it will give you a distinct advantage in clinicials and help you be confident in interviews for tech and cna positions.
    awesome idea.


    whichever route you take make sure you list your pre-req classes on every application. as soon as i passed my cna test i applied at a home health agency and made $10 an hour and two months later i was hired by the hospital for $12. and this is a right to work state that isn't noted for high salaries but decent jobs are out there.
    i like this strategy. i'm stealing it.

    now i have myself in an excellent position of moving right in to an rn position when i finally finish the program..............somedays it feels like forever. but i am blessed to have a good job that i enjoy while i'm in school.

    you see, that's the kind of strategy that i'm hoping for. finish the program then whamo: instant job.
    i'm right on the cusp of being accepted into my nursing school program - and it seems like an eternity since i got the bright idea to become a nurse. it's going to be different leaving out the house in scrubs and crocs instead of in heels and a business suit.

    thanks for these tips.

    can you, or anyone, tell me - are cnas and nurse techs different roles? how are they different? even though i read these boards faithfully, i'm still not clear on how the roles differ. and is it true that a person can possibly "come off the street" and get a tech job, or must i be licensed first?

    i was looking at my resume when i was applying for the sitters job and was thinking, gee, no one's going to hire me.
    Last edit by Phoenixbyrd on Jan 30, '12 : Reason: hard to read.
  10. 1
    Quote from Phoenixbyrd
    Thanks for these tips.

    Can you, or anyone, tell me - are CNAs and nurse techs different roles? How are they different? Even though I read these boards faithfully, I'm still not clear on how the roles differ. And is it true that a person can possibly "come off the street" and get a tech job, or must I be licensed first?

    I was looking at my resume when I was applying for the sitters job and was thinking, gee, no one's going to hire me.
    Depending on your state, CNA's and nurse techs have different roles, mainly due to the environment. Nurse techs are usually found in hospitals and can insert foleys, some hospitals even let techs draw blood and read EKGs. But on top of those special skills, they are still the equivalent to being a CNA. So either 1. getting your CNA license or 2. waiting till you finish your first semester of clinicals seems to be the best bet. The 2nd option again depends on the hospitals policies. I know here in GA, all the hospitals note they will accept nursing students with at least 1 semester of clinicals finished. However, the best option would be to apply for a nurse extern program at the hospital if they offer one. That way you are hired with no CNA license required, no CNA experience expected, they work with you because you are a student, and sometimes even pay you more than the regular techs. Now that I have accepted this job(yay!), I plan to apply for their nurse extern program when I finish my 1st semester of nursing school.

    So you have the option to wait until nursing school(if hospitals in your area are keen on hiring nursing students) or get licensed.

    The agency I worked at as a sitter required 6 months of CNA experience which I had gotten from the nursing home.
    bearcat194 likes this.
  11. 0
    PCA's or HHA's pay decent. I know alot of home care agencies offer free training and certification. Most start of at 9.00/hr


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