becoming a cna

Nurses General Nursing


hello, I am new to this nursing forum and i have a couple of questions mind u i am a premed student not a nursing student. I was just wondering how do u become a cna and what does the job entail in terms of duties. I ask because I want to volunteer which is a requirement for medical schools and I actually want to have patient interaction not just run errands. Also another thing in terms of gross factor do i have to deal with feces and what not. Thanks I appreciate any of your responses

Love4Me, RN

134 Posts

Specializes in NICU.

I am currently in the process of finishing my training to become a CNA. I will be certified in the state of Michigan, so I can only inform you of the capacity of the CNA position here.

I had to do 75 hours of classroom/clinical training. And then pass 2 state given exams. The first one is a clinical exam and the second a writen exam. In my training we learned how to care for the residents of a nursing home. And yes you do get alot of the "gross" procedures. We do the showers/baths, oral care, peri-care (feces & urine), we clean catheters, feed the patients, help them to the bathrooms, change their linens, talk with them, comfort them, we do postmortem care, etc.

CNA is not a position for everyone. Your days as a CNA can be very trying and take their toll on you; however, they can also be extremely rewarding. I have found that you must have a genuine care for people to be able to survive in this positon.

I hope that this little bit of information helps you.


11 Posts

thank you for clarifying that for me I guess i will not volunteer as a cna its just too gross for me one of the main reasons I chose to go to medical school instead of nursing school is the gross factor. thanks anyway. By the way does any one know of volunteer opportunities that enables me to have patient interaction without the cleaning of feces.


184 Posts

I am curious as to why you think that medicine is any less "gross" than nursing?

I strongly suggest you call the volunteer department at a large hospital and ask them how you can volunteer on actual units. Watch the nurses and the residents. Yes, nurses sometimes clean up poop. Yes, residents do rectal exams, get vomited on, poke and prod oozing wounds, etc. There are jobs in medicine that involve less "gross factor" (after residency that is), but there are also lots of nursing jobs with little gross factor too.

If you are going into health care, I would encourage you to see your future patients in a different light. You are not cleaning up feces or having to smell a gangrenous wound-- you are doing for them what they would do for themselves if they were able and assisting them back to wellness.


11 Posts

okay once again I did not say medicine is not gross but as a career it is not as gross as nursing. Like you said there are many type of doctors and alot of them do not have to deal with the gross factor compared to nurses. Jesus I dont understand people on this forum I ask one question and my head is almost bitten off first in the school nursing forum then here. I am sorry if I offended any one but the fact of the matter is nursing deals with alot more gross things than Medicine. Thanks for totally ignoring my question to defend nursing.


184 Posts

when someone labels my chosen career "gross" (without experiencing it themselves) I do feel the need to share my experience, thats all, no biting of heads


11 Posts

Im sorry if I offended you but the fact is the only reason that I said it was gross was because I asked and i was told it was. Also it is no secret the type of menial tasks nurses have to do VS the doc. The thing is I knew RN did have to do these tasks but I wasnot sure whether the CNA also had to deal with that.


266 Posts

:nono: We must not feed the trolls, we must do our menial tasks, we must not feed the trolls, we must do our menial tasks!!


11 Posts

first off iam not a troll i was sort of attacked for having an opinion about obviously a sensitive issue so i reacted. All u nurses need to lighten up all i did was ask a question how rude could u all be whoppe do i think feces is disgusting. Only nurses would say otherwise good for u for being so proud of cleaning after people. Applause! I think ill leave this forum now im sorry i ever posted anything on here.

Erin RN

396 Posts


Yeah, he is too a troll! You should read what he tried to do to us in "school nursing!"

I think he thought school nursing and nursing school were synonymous.

At first I thought, oh God, what is medicine coming to? Then I realized, this dolt is just in premed--he'll never make it to, much less through, med school.


Home Health Columnist / Guide


11 Articles; 18,056 Posts

Specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion.

I am hoping that the premed students of today and tomorrow can write a complete sentence using proper punctuation and capitalization as this ability greatly impacts physician documentation.

Good luck in medical school. Hoping in your education, you have to experience what it is like to be a patient, including using a bedpan.

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