If you would love to get into the medical field – but don’t want to go to med school – check out a CNA job description. With just some short training, you might be the perfect fit for a CNA opening!
What exactly would you do as a CNA?
Becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant means taking on more of a behind-the-scenes – but completely necessary – role. While doctors are busy making diagnoses and writing prescriptions, CNAs are in the background taking care of patients’ everyday needs.
They do everything from help patients get out of bed, comb their hair, and even help them travel to surgeries and therapy sessions.
In a CNA job description, you will also find a list of duties that most people could find distressing – like changing bed pans and diapers. Unpleasant as those things may be, though, they are vital to keeping patients as happy and healthy as they can be!
If you get a job as a CNA, you will also be responsible for many of the basic “building blocks” of medicine – like taking patients’ blood pressure and other vitals, along with monitoring them for any physical or behavioral changes. After all, CNAs are very hands-on with patients.
They might spend an entire day with a patient, while a doctor or nurse only sees the patient for a couple of minutes. That makes CNAs the most likely people to spot minor changes in a patient’s condition. And, remember, even small changes can have major significance!
Where would you work?
With some searching, you will see a CNA job description posted at all kinds of different medical facilities. That’s because CNAs have to go wherever the patients are! As a result, you will find them working in hospitals, private doctors’ offices, and nursing homes. There are even CNAs who handle personal in-home care for patients who need it!
What kind of qualities do you need to meet the demands of a CNA job description?
Because a CNA’s duties can include plenty of various things in so many different facilities, if you want to succeed at this kind of work, you will have to be able to handle all kinds of different patients. One day you might work with someone who has been seriously injured. The next day, you might have a patient who is losing the battle with dementia – and is completely confused and irritable.
Even if it is not stated outright, part of meeting a CNA job description means being in relatively good physical shape. You do not have to be a bodybuilder, but you will have to be strong enough to lift patients in and out of bed, in and out of wheelchairs and in and out of diagnostic machines. You will also have to be robust and fit to let patients lean on you when they are up and walking around.
Adding to the physical challenge?
You will have to spend lots of hours on your feet. When you are not in a patient’s room taking care of them, you will be responsible for responding to their calls for help. If you want to work as a CNA, you’ll need a great pair of rubber-soled shoes and the ability to move quickly!
You will also need a good immune system. After all, you are going to be subjected to all kinds of germs on a daily basis!
As important as all of these qualities are, there is another big part of meeting the requirements of a CNA job description – getting certified.
Unlike doctors and nurses, you won’t have to spend years in school, racking up thousands of dollars of debt in order to get trained. Instead, as long as you’ve got your high school diploma or GED, you can learn everything you need to be a CNA during a 50 or 75-hour training course. After that, you will need to pass the CNA certification exam.
The learning doesn’t stop there, though!
Once you’ve gotten your CNA certification, you will have to keep taking classes every couple of years in order to keep it. Your exact continuing education requirements will depend on your specific state or province. Luckily, all of that ongoing education is a great chance to upgrade your skills and make yourself more marketable to employers!
If you have got a “dream” CNA job description in mind – one that focuses on a specific part of medicine – you can get there with the right education. By choosing the right continuing education courses, you can qualify for a CNA job that’s very specialized. For example, you might be able to get a job in an ICU or working alongside a physical therapist.
No matter which route you take, meeting any CNA job description means getting able to think on your feet, act independently, and – most importantly – preserve your patients’ dignity!
United States Department Of Labor – Nursing Aides, Orderlies and Attendants