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CNA - What is the typical routine in a hospital

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:crying2: Hi

I am new to this as a CNA/PCT i cant seem to get a grip. I work as a Homecare giver right now I am trying to get in a hospital, but they all want experience. well I understand that, but how can I get experience if I cant get in? I need help what can I do to get experience. I will try anything any advise out there.

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13,805 Visitors; 837 Posts

My routine (and I am in the UK so probably the set-up will be a little different):

In the AM, getting people up, helping them to wash and dress, giving fresh bed linen, assisting patients to eat their breakfast, checking vitals and blood sugars when they are due (although normally the nurses do that, we do it if they are busy, or we split it- I'll do half and the RN does the other half).

If patients come in from casualty, I check their vitals, list their property on a form, do anything else the RN asks me to.

Then at lunch time, help give the trays and help the patients to eat.

Afternoon: vitals again, I like to give out snacks about 4pm (usually biscuits with their cup of tea), talk to the patients, make sure they are drinking enough, or having mouth swabs if they can't drink.

Evening: More vitals, passing out supper trays, assisting with feeding.

And of course, I also do frequent rounds of turning, re-positioning and changing those who need it (varies from 1 pt. to 30!)

Edited by JDZ344

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13,805 Visitors; 837 Posts

I should have added to my post that in between everything, there are the dratted call lights! Somedays we have up to 15 patients who need help to do things, and on others all my patients are ambulating and self caring- it really does depend!

Edited by JDZ344

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486 Visitors; 2 Posts

in my area, cna's at hospitals start at around $11-12 hr. being a cna in a hospital is much easier than being a cna in ltc, it's just like most things, people that do the hardest work don't get the higher pay.

As a CNA that has worked in assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and hospitals, I'm going to have to disagree with your comment about people that do the hardest work don't get the higher pay.

Skilled nursing facilities (SNFs, nursing homes) are routine. Care plans are filled out for you to reference, and once you get to know your residents, the routine becomes much easier. Nursing homes are intense on your body, but there are usually more lifts present in these facilities to ease the physical burden.

Assisted living facilities vary greatly but again -- once you know your residents, the routine becomes easier.

I've been busy at each facility. I've had crazy bad days at each. But working in a hospital requires much more thinking on the fly and "getting caught with your pants down" than any other facility I've been employed in. I've been doing this for 8 years.

Depending on the facility -- you are dealing with the possibility of needing to initiate emergency codes and administer CPR, and you're dealing with people you barely know anything about. Hospitals tend to prefer CNAs with experience as they require a lot more juggling of tasks at the same time and thinking under pressure. Even with 5 years of experience as a CNA, my first job in a hospital was on an acute care / med surg / telemetry unit. I had to take Protonix for 8 months and almost quit about 5 times in those 8 months, but I stuck with it. It is a level of insane crazy that I have never experienced before, had a very high patient turn over rate due to the nature of the unit, and I had to learn the time management skills of a god in order to be good at that job. I earned every extra cent I made.

Granted it's not going to be like that everywhere you go, but you can't blanket statment like that. It doesn't always work that way.

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6,213 Visitors; 332 Posts

As a CNA that has worked in assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and hospitals, I'm going to have to disagree with your comment about people that do the hardest work don't get the higher pay.

Skilled nursing facilities (SNFs, nursing homes) are routine. Care plans are filled out for you to reference, and once you get to know your residents, the routine becomes much easier. Nursing homes are intense on your body, but there are usually more lifts present in these facilities to ease the physical burden.

Assisted living facilities vary greatly but again -- once you know your residents, the routine becomes easier.

I've been busy at each facility. I've had crazy bad days at each. But working in a hospital requires much more thinking on the fly and "getting caught with your pants down" than any other facility I've been employed in. I've been doing this for 8 years.

Depending on the facility -- you are dealing with the possibility of needing to initiate emergency codes and administer CPR, and you're dealing with people you barely know anything about. Hospitals tend to prefer CNAs with experience as they require a lot more juggling of tasks at the same time and thinking under pressure. Even with 5 years of experience as a CNA, my first job in a hospital was on an acute care / med surg / telemetry unit. I had to take Protonix for 8 months and almost quit about 5 times in those 8 months, but I stuck with it. It is a level of insane crazy that I have never experienced before, had a very high patient turn over rate due to the nature of the unit, and I had to learn the time management skills of a god in order to be good at that job. I earned every extra cent I made.

Granted it's not going to be like that everywhere you go, but you can't blanket statment like that. It doesn't always work that way.

Hey I start on MONDAY on a telemetry/med surg floor. Any info/suggestions? My orientation is all this week and one day next week.

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Coriander is a BSN, RN and specializes in Hospice & Palliative Care, Oncology, M/S.

10,888 Visitors; 763 Posts

Hey I start on MONDAY on a telemetry/med surg floor. Any info/suggestions? My orientation is all this week and one day next week.

Carry a pack of electrodes with you at all times. You will be surprised how often the monitor tech will call you because someone's leads have fallen off. :)

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6,213 Visitors; 332 Posts

Carry a pack of electrodes with you at all times. You will be surprised how often the monitor tech will call you because someone's leads have fallen off. :)

Well I dont think they will let us do ekg's there...never was told what I will be doing exactly. The recruiter messed up the orientation schedule this week...so I guess I go in Thursday for computer training, then the 31st (my 2nd day on floor)..is on site orientation for 2hrs during my shift...then the 6th and 7th now (was supposed to be today and tomorrow for na orintation). Im not sure what you do in Nursing Assistant orientation but kind of pointless after you already started working. What should I expect, help me start off good?

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Coriander is a BSN, RN and specializes in Hospice & Palliative Care, Oncology, M/S.

10,888 Visitors; 763 Posts

The Tele floors that I've worked on (I float from site to site) are amazingly crazy busy. A lot depends on the acuity of your patients as to how much extra work you'll need to do. Many of my patients on the higher-needs floor need a Hibiclens bath for their central lines, and almost every patient needs a daily weight.

Time management is your key. When I first start my shift, I just do vitals and change my name on the boards. Then, after charting, I'll go back around to see if people need water refills or potty breaks (if there wasn't a need for it during vitals). I'll also change sheets if necessary and will do the Hibiclens baths.

Naturally, my phone is ringing off the hook the entire time, mostly to put someone's lead back on. This is simply reattaching the lead to the electrode, or attaching a whole new electrode to the patient if the sticky has worn off. :)

I will start my next set of vital signs early, so I can weigh patients as necessary. I like getting everything done at once, so I don't have to wake people up. (I mainly work nights.)

At my facility, we do hourly rounds anyways, so it's a good opportunity to see if anyone needs anything proactively.

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6,213 Visitors; 332 Posts

Thanks for the info. :) I will be on days.

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Coriander is a BSN, RN and specializes in Hospice & Palliative Care, Oncology, M/S.

10,888 Visitors; 763 Posts

Thanks for the info. :) I will be on days.

You're welcome! Day shift is very similar. Vitals q4hrs, showers or bedbaths, toileting, meal trays, I&O, etc. Admissions and discharges can get a bit speedy. :) Also, visiting hours also bring curious family members, but I love this because it offers the patients a chance to get away from being stuck in a bed for hours alone.

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