CNA's-What do you think nurses should do about lazy uncooperative CNA's?


I know there are many wonderful CNA's. But what about those CNA's who are lazy, uncooperative and hostile? What do you think the nurses should do about those kind of CNA's?


1,335 Posts

Specializes in hospice.

I think they should fire them. Honestly, in this economy where there are hundreds of applicants for every job, it seems to me it wouldn't be that hard to find good employees, so why keep the bad ones around? I have never understood employers who put up with crappy employees once it becomes clear that they are not in need of more training, help, or support.... they're just crappy. But especially in times like these, when it's a buyers' market, so to speak, they can be choosy. So why not get the best?

And yes, fire them for cause, so that the taxpayers don't end up paying unemployment insurance for them to sit on their butts.


837 Posts

I think they should be fired.

I work with some lazy, rude NA's. Management doesn't care, the nurses are powerless. In an ideal world the Board of nursing would deal with them. The RNs would be able to report their sorry butts for refusing to work/carry out delegation. After x amounts of reports, or x amount of separate RNs reporting, the NA would be, much like a nurse can be, taken in front of the board and lose their certification. I believe this is the only effective way to deal with them. (of course, warnings can be issued first before the report is made)

Of course, NAs are not even certified in my country (although they may be soon). They should be accountable to somebody outside of work, somebody who is not their friend and doesn't really care about their excuses. (several of the NA's where I work are buddies with the boss and can get away with anything).

I'm curious now- can an American CNA lose their certification for not doing their job?

As far as I know we can if reported for abuse or neglect.

I've left jobs for employers not cracking down on lazy people. I can't risk my certification and back for their slothish ways. I feel bad for the residents, but when people have been working there for 10+ years and do the things I've seen, management isn't doing their job.


180 Posts

How about when you are scrambling and ask your CNA (hanging/hiding out in her favorite patient's room), to do something, and she rolls her eyes and walks very...very...slowly. Is that insubordination? Can you prove it? Difficult.


446 Posts

It all depends on the management at the place. Some places the RNs definitely run the show, and any CNA that goes up against an RN is going to lose that battle, and probably their job. Other places the CNAs seem to have a lot more leverage. My experience is that its usually the CNAs whove been there a long time and maybe have a few friends in high places that are hard to discipline and get rid of, whereas new CNAs who are insuboridnate or have a bad attitude usually are gone in a short time.

Some DONs have probably learned the hard way that the devil you know is sometimes better than the devil you dont know. I worked at a facility that cleaned house and fired a few senior CNAs that had bad attitudes, and replaced them with fresh faced eager to please rookie CNAs. What could possibly go wrong eh? Turns out many of the CNAs they let go were loved by the residents, and the new CNAs were hated by the residents, disliked by families, and resented by the other coworkers who had to help them learn the job, and the facility wound up with a lot more problems than they began with.

At the end of the day though nobody is irreplaceable, and new CNAs are a dime a dozen(athough competent CNAs are a lot more rare).


22 Posts

I am a CNA, about to start my LPN program. I have to agree with the poster who said to write them up. I worked with some great CNAs and then a few who were so awful, rude and lazy that they brought the productivity of the whole team down. If only someone had written them up, we would have been rid of them a lot faster.


34 Posts

Has 3 years experience.

Here's the thing. I'm a CNA working my way through school (not nursing school). I work hard every shift. I do everything I need to do and often I do more. I have worked with other CNAs who are lazy and it's so incredibly dangerous. Write them up. Seriously, it makes us good CNAs feel like our situation with dealing with lazy coworkers is being noticed (without us having to complain amongst ourselves and get nowhere). And it reduces our stress to have good coworkers who are dependable. I'm not willing to get injured on the job or jeopardize my residents for an unreliable coworker.

llg, PhD, RN

13,469 Posts

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 46 years experience.

As others have said, you document the problems appropriately and report it to the management. If the management refuses to follow-up with appropriate disciplinary action ... then your primary problem is with management, not the staff members who take advantage of the bad management.

Speak to them privately first to see if there isn't another underlying problem first. If nothing changes, then write them up/report them. We all have problems in our lives, but if a CNA isn't able to do their job safely and effectively, then they need to be replaced. Quickly.