Pearls of wisdom needed

  1. [font=impact][font=franklin gothic medium]i teach a cna course at a local vo-tech school. most of my students are adult learners. most to all of them are are high school drop outs or ged grads. i've thought about creating a booklet containing "pearls of wisdom". the content i'm looking for is ideas or concepts that new cna working for the first time should know other than what comes from class. or maybe re-enforcing a basic skill that should be practiced continually. i am hoping someone(s) out there in the cyber world could share some of your wisdom. i want my students to succeed and their employers to continue to use our school for the classes. thanks in advance for your suggestions. ysadli sure there are more helpful hints you wish your new cna's could / need to know. tanks in advance. ysadl
    Last edit by YSADL on Feb 24, '05 : Reason: More feed back needed
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    About YSADL

    Joined: May '03; Posts: 18; Likes: 3

    17 Comments

  3. by   Tweety
    "Never say 'I'm just a CNA'. Remember you are valuable member of the health care team. You are the eyes and hears of the health care team and you can make a big difference in the health and welfare of the patient/resident."
  4. by   traumaRUs
    What about some general "lets go to work" tidbits? Be on time, be pleasant, smile, no swearing (ever), keep your personal business personal. Good luck. Your students are lucky to have you.
  5. by   weetziebat
    You'll work easier and better by cooperating with each other. Repositioning patients/residents, changing the bed etc. goes much quicker, with less chance of back injuries if you work as a team. Just because you are physically capable of lifting 150 lb. Mr. Smith to transfer, rather than take the time to do a correct pivot transfer, or use the Hoyer lift, doesn't mean it is a good idea.
  6. by   meownsmile
    Understand they may be asked to learn some skills that they werent taught in school, and it is part of their job to learn those tasks and use them.
  7. by   Antikigirl
    Take a breath every time you enter a room and really honestly remember..this is a human being in this room, and they need my help! I think we forget that so much with so much work load...so a nice cleansing breath helps, and also helps to remind yourself that you ARE helping...no matter how mundane or silly it seems day after day!

    Not all things work for all people. Use some creativity but keep it safe! Sometimes out of the norm techniques not only make you more flexible, but helps to ensure trust. I find actually doing ACTIVE LISTENING helps to do this. If a patient can't stand a gait belt..find other alternatives and have your RN or nursing staff help (so it is documented and okay'd and you don't get in trouble!).

    Don't try to be their 'friend'...they are your patient, and there must be a border on work and friendship. I don't mean stick strictly to business...be friendly, but the moment you start the 'friendship' deal, you get stuck in a cycle that can be bias towards certain people (good and bad). Respect them, be nice, be pleasant, but don't cross lines...that doesn't help others that work with that patient!!!!!! ( I have many folks that prefer one CNA over another...that is going to happen, but I mean we are talking folks so addicted to certain CNA's they get angry if they take vacations...or start horrid rumors about the ones they don't like...so it doesn't help to play "patients pet!".

    COMMUNICATION!!!!!!!! Heck, I have so many CNA's that know little 'quirks' or helpful hints that help them do their duties with a patient but assume or simply don't care if another CNA knows them or not. Communicate...it is for the patients...so if Mr. So and SO is a little less anxious with some decaf and time before dressing him...let others know this so they can keep the consistancy .

    LEARN TO DOCUMENT!!!!!!! Ask a nurse if you are unsure of what to say...but you need this skill in various situations...it is total CYA, and essential..the best lessons I have ever done for CNA's is documentation..and mine are pros now!!!!!! (better than some nurses...and it so helps me to really get a picture of what is going on...but I work in assisted living so CNA's do all the direct care...so it is helpful big time!).

    And it sounds silly..but think to yourself...at this moment in time, in this space, in this corner of the world..I am here...just me and my patient, and for some reason, be it fate or not I am here to help this one person at this one point in time...I am worth much..and I will help...I am here! SO many CNA's burn out or feel like mud on a shoe..on the contrary...you are valuable, you are there that moment, in that time, in that space in this dynamic world...you are needed and your tallents have this chance to shine...you are valuable...and there are more days than not that you have to be your own advocate and remind yourself of this...

    Oh yeah...and tell them that a Nurse from Oregon advocates for CNA's all the time and value them so very very much! I love CNA's...they are my everything and help me to help...without them I wouldn't know what I would do! So there are nurses out there that do care...really! (there are so many complaints towards nurses...and that makes me sad but I understand it...but I chose to make a difference and support them big time..and a choice I feel was the best in my career! They are my friends, they are my strength, they are so much to me! HUGSSSSSSS).
  8. by   NurseFirst
    Quote from ysadl
    [font=impact][font=franklin gothic medium]i teach a cna course at a local vo-tech school. most of my students are adult learners. most to all of them are are high school drop outs or ged grads. i've thought about creating a booklet containing "pearls of wisdom". the content i'm looking for is ideas or concepts that new cna working for the first time should know other than what comes from class. or maybe re-enforcing a basic skill that should be practiced continually. i am hoping someone(s) out there in the cyber world could share some of your wisdom. i want my students to succeed and their employers to continue to use our school for the classes. thanks in advance for your suggestions. ysadl
    make it in the shape of a hand to remind them that handwashing the single most important step in the spread of disease. or, if you can't do that, have every other page or section have a reminder to wash their hands...alcohol pads work well on devices such as dynamaps to prevent spread of disease as well.

    i think one of the most dramatic lectures i had in my first term of nursing school was the deletorious (sp?) effects of immobility, and, specifically, of laying in bed. where we did our subacute care clinical the charge nurse said "i think every patient should be gotten up every day." (even if it's for 15 minutes) there is a lot of wisdom in that! (besides, it is soooo much easier to change the bed that way .

    please, no chewing gum or sucking on tootsie roll pops (which i saw a cna in an acute care hospital do ). emphasize professionalism, and the relationship between the respect they get and their professionalism, both from staff and patients!

    be sure that how they act will affect how you are seen, and how the school is seen; that the school's reputation will influence their ability to get jobs. don't ruin it for those who come after them. i know it may be difficult in a vo-tech setting, but inspiring loyalty to the institute which is educating them can go a long way.

    and, echoing every one else's sentiment: cnas are valuable and very much appreciated!!!! you might put in little vignettes showing a resident's distress and how an effective cna relieves the distress (getting them to see the situation from the resident's point of view--in terms of pride, dignity, embarrassment, etc.; such as how much better the pt felt after her bedbath.) that doing well by the patient will most likely make their job easier, because the pt will have felt attended to.

    nursefirst
    Last edit by NurseFirst on Feb 14, '05
  9. by   NurseFirst
    Quote from 3rdShiftGuy
    "Never say 'I'm just a CNA'. Remember you are valuable member of the health care team. You are the eyes and hears of the health care team and you can make a big difference in the health and welfare of the patient/resident."
    You know, maybe there should be a CNA "pledge"...

    "I am a CNA. I see my patients more than almost anyone else. I help patients with things they cannot do themselves. Since these are often highly personal, I will treat my patients with sensitivity and dignity. My eyes, my ears, my nose, my hands provide the means to care, and to sense when things are not right with my patients."

    Like that. Combat the "I'm just a CNA" thinking!

    NurseFirst
  10. by   medsurgnurse
    tell them their insight and input about the patient is valuable. For example, Mrs. Jones hasn't been eating well, or had pain when transferring, or hasn't moved her bowels. TELL this things to the nurse. The best CNA's will tell the nurse when they notice something different, then let the nurse to handle it form there.
  11. by   DDRN4me
    I agree with all of the above. I teach Instructional Assistants in my school for special needs kids, and one of the things i stress most is that they have a very important position..they are our kids eyes, ears, and mouth, and need to advocate for their kids...also they are a valuable member of the team...Communication and the way they communicate to others is extremely important, and....:wink2: :wink2: :wink2: smile when you take care of your patient, they will appreciate it! this could be their grandparent or parent, and deserve the best care possible!
  12. by   debRN0417
    Treat EVERYONE as you would want to be treated.
    Speak to EVERYONE as you would want to be spoken to.
    Care for EVERYONE as you would want to be cared for.
    Be honest, even if you have made a mistake.
    Learn from your mistakes.
    Don't be afraid to question.
    Don't be afraid to care.
  13. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Take care of your BACK, cause NO ONE ELSE will!
  14. by   YSADL
    Quote from 3rdShiftGuy
    "Never say 'I'm just a CNA'. Remember you are valuable member of the health care team. You are the eyes and hears of the health care team and you can make a big difference in the health and welfare of the patient/resident."
    Thanks for your reply. I've tried to impree upon them how valuable they are to the residents and charge nurses. Ysadl

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