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working as a CNA on a hospital's Med Surg floor

Nurses   (19,837 Views 12 Comments)
by toddmeyer11 toddmeyer11 (New Member) New Member

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I am a CNA and have a job interview at a hospital to work on the "Med Surg" floor. Does anybody know what my CNA job responsibilities would be working on that floor? Please let me know.

Thanks.

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837 Posts; 13,835 Profile Views

I work in a hospital. Be aware that it depends on the floor.

I assist people to get up/washed and dressed, to eat, drink. I do a LOT of vital signs on people, especially those who have had surgery or procedures done. I change a lot of sheets/incontience pads. I turn people frequently. I run around a lot, going to stores, pharmacy, wherever the thing is that the RN needs. I do EKGs, help the RN with procedures/interventions if they need help... probably loads more that I am forgetting, but I think that covers the main stuff :)

Edited by JDZ344

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General E. Speaking, RN is a RN and specializes in floor to ICU.

4 Articles; 1,337 Posts; 22,531 Profile Views

Doing vital signs and charting them, assisting w/ meals, passing meal trays, filling water pitchers, bathing, toileting, repositioning, answering call lights, and cleaning bed bound pts that are incontinent

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10 Posts; 1,256 Profile Views

Do you enjoy working in the hospital environment or would a nursing home or assisted living facility environment be better. I currently have interviews set up at all locations and am not sure which would be best to work at.

Edited by toddmeyer11
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General E. Speaking, RN is a RN and specializes in floor to ICU.

4 Articles; 1,337 Posts; 22,531 Profile Views

Do you enjoy working in the hospital environment or would a nursing home or assisted living facility environment be better. I currently have interviews set up at all locations and am not sure which would be best to work at.

I am not a CNA so I cannot answer for them. I have never worked in a NH. But, in general, you will have less patients at a hospital vs NH. Some of the CNAs at our hospital are worth their weight in gold and when I was on the floor, I couldn't have done my job nearly as well without them.

Any CNAs out there that have worked both hospital, ass't living and NH?

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General E. Speaking, RN is a RN and specializes in floor to ICU.

4 Articles; 1,337 Posts; 22,531 Profile Views

Wanted to add that under the "Student Forum" there is a section for PCTs/CNAs. You may have better luck searching/posting there. Good luck!

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382 Posts; 7,356 Profile Views

I currently work at a hospital however I had my clinicals in a nursing home and worked at a nursing home for a short time. The nursing home is much more routine. Same people everyday, mostly getting people up for breakfast, helping feed them, laying them down for naps, changing residents, etc.

At my hospital I work on a post op floor and my shift usually consists of getting vitals, getting people up for meals, getting them up to walk, helping them wash up, doing blood sugar checks, bringing patients down to xray, running to the lab if the RN needs something, answering call lights, etc.

I personally love working at the hospital but I am going to school to be an RN and want to work in a hospital so it makes sense for me. If you like routine and knowing what your day is going to be like a nursing home might be better. I also think working in a nursing home is much harder physically as there is a lot more lifting and turning of patients. I think working in a hospital is easier in that sense, however, your day is much less predictable.

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837 Posts; 13,835 Profile Views

Do you enjoy working in the hospital environment or would a nursing home or assisted living facility environment be better. I currently have interviews set up at all locations and am not sure which would be best to work at.

Nursing homes are (generally) understaffed and you get swamped with more residents than you can deal with. Hospitals have better staffing numbers.

Edited by JDZ344

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117 Posts; 3,454 Profile Views

I have worked both get the hospital job if you can, but most want a years experience to hire you. my work in the hospital is almost exactly how you first responder described it.

LTC consist basically of brief changing, bathing and toileting (add feeding to that if you work days I personally never did). You will also have twice the patient load in LTC.

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246 Posts; 7,039 Profile Views

Well to be honest it all depends on what shift you are going to be working and what your hospital's policies are. I work 2nd shift on an Oncology/Med Surg unit in a hospital but I did my clinicals in a nursing home. I also had orientation on day shift when I started so I was able to get a good feel for everything before deciding what I liked.

Personally I feel that working in a hospital can lead to more opportunities and is less back breaking than working in a nursing home. During my clinicals I felt like I was fighting an uphill battle dealing with the elderly patients. A majority of them had varying forms of dementia and would act out constantly. Lots of incontinence and trying to get them to bathe was like pulling teeth. Almost all of them required sit-to-stands or Hoyer lifts. It was just exhausting work and I give kudos to all the CNAs who do it because it really isn't for me.

First shift at the hospital was too crazy for me as well. Ok I am a bit biased because I love second shift (hey I like to sleep in!) but I couldn't stand all the doctors, PT, OT, PAs, students, Respiratory, Case Workers, management etc etc being around constantly hogging all the computers so you can't chart or being in a patients room forever and not letting you work around them even if you just wanted to get a pulse ox or a temperature. With middle shift all those people are gone except for the few stragglers so you can work at your own pace and not around theirs.

This is what I am allowed to do at my current job: Vital signs (lots and LOTS of vital signs!), phlebotomy, various specimen collections, EKGs (I don't have to interpret anything. I just do the test and put it in the patients chart.), d/c foleys, 1:1 with patients, blood sugar checks, emptying various tubes, bulbs, pumps, putting patients on oxygen (the RN tells me how many liters to put them on. I can't do that myself). Plus the usual CNA stuff like linen changes, changing briefs and the occasional bath that didn't get done on day shift. I also get to float to other floors after 6 months so you learn a lot in those areas too. One tech just went to the ER for the day and another went to the ICU. So there is a wealth of variety if you like that sort of thing.

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Trilldayz,RN BSN specializes in Critical Care (ICU/CVICU).

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Having been a CNA in both settings, I would definately recommend the hospital!!! All the previous posts are completely accurate on the reasons behind the preference!

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I worked in the hospital for 7 months and realized it was not for me. You do not get to know your patients as you would in a nursing home, or assisted living. It can also be somewhat fastpaced and you never know what type of patient you will be dealing with. It really just depends on the type of person you are.

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