Are you interested in starting a career in the ever-growing Healthcare Field, but don’t know where to start? A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) position can be a great entry level position for someone interested in a career in healthcare. Certified Nursing Assistants work as a part of a patient’s healthcare team, in a variety of settings, and perform duties alongside medical staff. CNAs have a unique opportunity to continue their education using the skills and knowledge acquired to advance in their career by gaining additional certifications or completing nursing programs for licensure.
A CNA, or Certified Nursing Assistant, works as a part of a patient’s healthcare team. A Certified Nursing Assistant may also be referred to as a Nurse’s Aide, Patient Care Technician, or Nursing Assistant. A CNA is required to work under the supervision of licensed nursing staff such as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or Registered Nurse (RN). CNAs provide direct patient care and primarily assist patients with their Activities of Daily Living. A CNAs scope of practice can vary by state and job responsibilities can vary by facility, but typical duties may include assisting a patient to shower or bathe and use the restroom, helping with patient transferring, repositioning patients, obtaining vital signs, and assisting healthcare staff with minor medical procedures. Certified Nursing Assistants work in a variety of settings including hospitals, long-term care facilities, rehabilitation facilities, and community practices.
Training and Requirements
Training programs and requirements for certification vary by state, but typically include completing a state-approved CNA program and passing a state exam for certification. Federal regulations require at least 75 hours of training including, at a minimum, 16 hours of supervised practical training. Practical training is defined as training that takes place in a laboratory or other setting in which the trainee demonstrates knowledge while performing tasks on an individual under the direct supervision of a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse. There are also federal requirements detailing necessary components of a training program’s curriculum which include subjects such as communication and interpersonal skills, infection control, basic nursing skills, personal care skills, mental health and social service’s needs, and patient rights. Generally, the state exam for certification includes a written test and a skills evaluation. CNA certifications typically require renewal every 2 years and Certified Nursing Assistants may need to show proof of in-service hours. Recertification requirements also vary by state. CNAs can also earn additional certifications to perform more advanced clinical tasks. These types of certifications can include Medication Aid Certification, Phlebotomy Certification, or CNA II or III Certifications.
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics the median salary for a Certified Nursing Assistant in 2021 was $30,290 or $14.56/hr. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics also reports that the top industries for Certified Nursing Assistants as of May 2021 include Government ($37,310) and Hospitals ($35,870). CNAs with specialized certifications can likely make more.
Job Opportunities Currently Available/For Instance
Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Georgia is one of the leading pediatric healthcare systems in the country and is currently hiring Patient Care Technicians (Certified Nursing Assistants) to join their team.
DocGo is often hiring for CNA jobs, including roles as educators in addition to working directly with patients.
Morning Pointe Senior Living has Senior Living, Assisted Living, Personal Care, and Memory Care “Senior Communities” throughout the Southeast United States and is currently looking to hire Certified Nursing Assistants in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana.
Now is the time to join great and growing healthcare teams and start your career in healthcare. As a CNA you will have unlimited opportunity for continued learning, education, and growth in your career.