If you want to be a CNA you need to know what the various CNA industries are that you can work in. Firstly, it is important to note that becoming a CNA is one of the best things that you could possibly do. This is because it is the easiest way for you to get your foot in the door of the health care industry. Why would you want to do that? Well, while other industries are on the decline, the healthcare industry always remains strong. There will never be a time when people will not need the medical attention of a healthcare specialist like a CNA. Consequently, there are a number of different areas and industries in which a CNA can work. Some of the main areas are listed below. Because healthcare specialists are in high demand you will most likely always have a job if you qualify as a CNA. And, because there are so many different job options available you will almost definitely be able to find a CNA industry that suits you.
Assisted Living Facilities And Nursing Homes
These are the kinds of facilities where elderly people and people who are unable to adequately take care of themselves live. In these facilities it is the duty of the CNA to help these people with basic daily activities as well as to do some basic medical tasks. A CNA in these settings as well as in most others has to answer to a doctor or a more senior nurse such as an LPN or an RN. In this situation your main tasks as a CNA will include:
- Bathing the patient
- Changing the patient’s bedding
- Washing out bedpans
- Using needles
- Taking vitals
- Drawing blood
- Keeping the patient comfortable
- Helping the patient in any way possible
- Being very friendly
- Dressing the patient
- Helping the patient to eat
- Physically transferring the patient from their bed to chairs
- Transporting via wheelchairs
These are all of the basic tasks that you will perform but you must also note that a big part of working in this CNA industry involves providing the emotional support that the patient’s need. Often they are there all alone and many of them do not receive visitors. You will be one of the constants in their lives, and it is therefore your duty to make them feel as happy and comfortable as possible in the assisted living facility setting. If you feel that you do not have the personality required to do this job properly in this setting then perhaps you should either consider a different CNA industry or you should look for another job altogether.
Clinics And Hospitals
Clinics and hospitals are the better known places for nurses in general to work, and this is what people usually think of when they consider pursuing a career in this industry. If you work in a clinic or a hospital as a CNA your tasks will differ significantly depending on the patient that you are taking care of. As a CNA you can deal with:
Clearly each of the above people will require a different type of care and a different level of interaction. It also depends on the type of illness or injury that the person has. In addition CNAs work in different wards or departments of hospitals or clinics, which will also affect what they do. For example, different tasks will be required in the emergency room than in the operating recovery room.
In hospitals and clinics CNAs do the following things:
- Take patient vitals
- Settle the patient to wait for the RN and doctor
- Check in on patients
- Record vitals
- Obtain medical documentation
- Ask the patient what occurred
- Ask about the patient’s reason for being admitted
- Do simple procedures like drawing blood
There are often other tasks that they will have to do as well, but these are the main duties of a CNA in the hospital or clinic industry.
A CNA can work in a doctor’s office. In a doctor’s office you may be responsible for a fair amount of admin, so this is an additional skill that you will need to have if you want to work in this CNA industry. You will also have to have very good interpersonal skills. A CNA that works in a doctor’s office usually has to work at the front desk, which means that you will be the first person that the patient meets when they come in. In order to convey a good image of your employer’s practice you will need to know how to relate to these people adequately. This also extends to your telephone skills. You will be the one in charge of phoning patients and ensuring that they are coming to their appointments, as well as making new appointments with them. In many cases you will be required to assist the doctor in the actual examination of the patient. Several of the skills that you will need for a hospital setting also apply here. Keeping patient records up to date will also be one of your primary tasks, and this will require data capturing skills as well as organizational skills. Although you will still be working closely with patients in this setting you will not be with them as constantly as in other settings. In addition the ailments that you will see in a doctor’s office tend to be less severe than those you would see in a hospital, for example, so there is a lower degree of emotional support required.
Home Health Care Agencies
Another CNA industry in which you may be interested in working is the home healthcare industry. As the name suggests in these cases you will be required to assist a patient in their own home. This is when the patient is unable to care for themselves but who does not want to be kept in a hospital. Usually elderly people will have a home-based CNA. Your tasks for this industry will include:
- Bathing and dressing the patient and basically keeping track of their hygiene.
- Monitoring vital signs.
- Ensuring that medications are taken appropriately.
- In some cases a small amount of cooking and cleaning may form part of the job, although you are not obligated to do this.
CNAs who work in a home environment have a lot more freedom as they are unsupervised. However the still have to be very careful not to do anything that falls outside of their scope of practice. CNAs are monitored by the agency that employs them to ensure that the best care possible is provided to the patient. Patience and people skills are really important for this particular CNA industry because you will be dealing a lot with patients on a one-to-one basis. This could, in the end, get very tedious, especially if you are dealing with the same person day in and day out. However this is just the kind of constant interaction that suits some people who like to develop strong relationships with their patients.
This is one of the hardest jobs that a CNA could have and it is definitely one of the toughest CNA industries to work in. this is because the vast majority of patients that are in a hospice are terminal. A hospice is essentially a facility that exists to keep patients comfortable in the last days of their life. It is important that you are able to deal with the concept of death if you are to work in this industry. Death is something that you will have to deal with on a daily basis in this situation and you cannot let this get the best of you. In a hospice you have to be at the same time detached enough to survive the emotional rollercoaster and able to communicate with your patients easily and provide them with emotional support. Finding this balance is difficult and many CNAs working in this industry tend to burn out eventually if they do not make an effort to talk about what is happening. You will have to take care of yourself as well as of the patients in your care if you want to be an effective CNA in this healthcare setting.
As you can see there are a lot of different CNA industries to choose form. Remember that not all industries suit everyone. For example you need to have the right personality to work in a hospice where you will mostly be dealing with terminal patients on a daily basis. This can be highly stressful and extremely emotional even for the strongest person. This is something that you will need to be able to deal with without letting it get you down. The kind of patients you want to work with will affect which of these CNA industries you decide to get involved with. Think about it carefully and make sure that you make the right choice of industry for you.