If you would like to work in the healthcare field but are not yet ready to or don’t want to pursue an advanced degree, such as that of a registered nurse, you can get your start (or make a living) as a certified nursing assistant.
A certified nursing assistant salary is quite adequate, about $23,000 a year once trained, such that you can obtain your training in just a few months; most training, for example, includes 50 hours of classroom instruction and 100 hours of hands on experience, although this can sometimes vary state to state or region to region.
What is a certified nursing assistant?
A certified nursing assistant is a specially trained health-care worker who has undergone training and who has received certification that training has been completed to become a certified nursing assistant. To become a certified nursing assistant, you have to complete classes, perform 100 hours of supervised clinical training, and then sit for an exam that will test your knowledge of basic skills necessary to be a certified nursing assistant. This central certification is necessary, because employers want to verify who has the basic experience and knowledge necessary to assist in patient care. In addition, this helps employers exclude people who have been previously registered as certified nursing assistants, but who have had their certifications pulled for whatever reason.
What are the job duties of a certified nursing assistant?
The job duties of a certified nursing assistant are relatively basic, but still require that you have a requisite level of skill and professionalism to complete them. This is to make sure that patients are safe and protected, and that the care they receive from you as a certified nursing assistant is adequate and appropriate.
Certified nursing assistants perform various duties, and may work in private home care situations, or in more professional medical settings like hospitals and nursing homes. Private home care certified nursing assistants may help patients with basic tasks of living such as dressing, hygiene, and help with basic cleaning tasks, may help with administering medication, and so on.
In a professional setting like a hospital or nursing home, certified nursing assistants may perform many of the duties nurses have traditionally; for example, they may turn patients to prevent bedsores with assistance, record food and fluid intake and output, take vital signs like blood pressure or pulse, help with personal hygiene, and provide other necessities of basic care.
Personal and professional qualifications of a certified nursing assistant
To be a certified nursing assistant, you must be very professional and very attentive to detail, because you’ll need to carefully and accurately record and report what you see with patients to supervisors and other nursing staff. Therefore, this is not a job to be taken lightly, and is very important; certified nursing assistants are in effect the “eyes and ears” for other medical personnel in regard to patient health and well-being, since they spend so much time one-on-one with patients.
What is a certified nursing assistant salary?
A certified nursing assistant can expect to make about $23,000 a year on average, as stated previously; this also depends on the area of the country you live in and the amount of specialization required. Because the health care profession is one area where job shortages are not generally a problem, certified nursing assistants should have little difficulty finding work; they should also be able to quite easily find full-time work if desired.
Much of the time, certified nursing assistant salary requirements are paid on an hourly basis rather than on a salaried basis, with benefits such as health insurance included.
Most areas of the health care profession use certified nursing assistants, both to ease the burden on health care professionals like registered nurses and to allow them to turn to more specialized tasks. That said, however, some sectors of healthcare facilities, like intensive care units or surgical units, usually do not use certified nursing assistants as part of their medical staffs. These “high-intensity” areas require much more expertise and specialization even for basic tasks than do most other areas of the health care profession.