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What can a CNA do?

What can a CNA do. What will they be able to do?

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Subject: Career question for you


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Jacob’s Answer

Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) play a crucial role in the healthcare industry, providing essential care to patients in various healthcare settings. Here's what CNAs can do:

1. **Direct Patient Care:** CNAs assist patients with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, grooming, and toileting. They also help patients with mobility, such as transferring them from beds to wheelchairs.

2. **Vital Signs Monitoring:** CNAs are trained to measure and record vital signs, including blood pressure, pulse, temperature, and respiration rates. These measurements help nurses and doctors assess a patient's health.

3. **Assisting with Meals:** CNAs help patients with eating and drinking, ensuring that they receive proper nutrition. They may also assist with special dietary needs or feeding tubes.

4. **Ambulation and Exercise:** CNAs encourage and assist patients with walking and performing prescribed exercises to maintain or improve their mobility.

5. **Bedside Care:** They are responsible for changing bed linens, keeping patient rooms clean and organized, and ensuring the comfort of patients.

6. **Recording Patient Information:** CNAs maintain detailed records of patient care activities, including changes in condition and interactions with patients.

7. **Providing Emotional Support:** CNAs offer emotional support to patients, lending a listening ear and providing companionship during their hospital stays or long-term care.

8. **Observing and Reporting:** CNAs observe patients closely and report any changes in their condition to the nursing staff. This helps in early detection of health issues.

9. **Assisting with Medical Procedures:** Under the supervision of nurses or physicians, CNAs may assist with simple medical procedures, such as wound care, catheter care, or specimen collection.

10. **Communication:** They act as a bridge between patients and the healthcare team, relaying patient concerns or needs to the appropriate personnel.

11. **Resident Care in Long-Term Facilities:** In long-term care settings like nursing homes, CNAs provide ongoing care to residents. This includes helping with activities of daily living, administering medications under supervision, and assisting residents with chronic conditions.

12. **End-of-Life Care:** CNAs provide compassionate care to patients at the end of life, ensuring their comfort and dignity.

CNAs work under the supervision of licensed nurses and are an essential part of the healthcare team. They are often the primary caregivers for patients, providing hands-on care and emotional support. CNAs are valued for their dedication and the compassionate care they offer to individuals in need of medical assistance.
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Michael’s Answer

Hi Christina,

There are different types of Nurses - RN (Registered Nurse), LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse), CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant), etc. There are different avenues for Nurses to serve - Emergency Room (ER), Pediatric, Floor, etc. My Mother retired as a Registered Nurse (RN). She was a head RN who looked after patients on the regular floors of the hospital.

RN designation is earned by attending and graduating from a 4 year college program with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. LPN and CNA designations can be earned by attending a 2 year college or vocational program. RNs administer patient medications, treatments and medical and educational advice and information to the patients. Whereas, LPNs and CNAs provide basic nursing care and comfortability to the patient. CNAs work under the supervision of the RNs and LPNs. Travel Nurses will go to different cities and different states to serve in hospitals and medical facilities.

Key responsibilities of CNAs:

- Provide vital support to both patients and nurses
- Transport patients
- Assist with patient baths and dressings
- Assist with feeding patients
- Stocking medical supplies
- Logging patient information
- Assist with bedding and upkeep of a patient's room

According to Johnson and Johnson, here is a link for Nursing Specialties:

While in high school, one will need to focus on science and math classes to prepare for a nursing career. Physics, chemistry and biology will be the core science courses. For math, algebra, geometry and statistics will be needed. Both concentrations will enable you to focus and refine your analytical skills for research; complex problem solving; investigative and innovative critical thinking; attention to detail; etc.

Other skills that will need to be built upon center around team building, team work and communication. In any work culture, collaboration among team members, staff and partner departments occur on a daily basis. As a nurse, communication is essential and critical when dealing with patients, medical personnel and other hospital staff. A college course in public speaking, communications and English will help with one's communication and writing skills. While in high school, the debate team will provide the opportunity to sharpen communication skills which are backed with research and factual data and information.

A Bachelor of Science (BSN) in Nursing will concentrate more on math and science courses. This will be earned at a college or university for a duration of four years. Clinical experience is gained while in nursing school at a college or university. Physiology, psychology and anatomy are some additional college courses that are required for one to take to become a Registered Nurse (RN).

Here are the Top 10 Best Nursing Schools of 2023 per

- Duke University
- Georgetown University
- Johns Hopkins University
- New York University
- University of Pennsylvania
- University of Michigan
- University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA)
- University of Washington
- Emory University
- University of Maryland

U.S. News & World Report has additional college listings for the best schools for a Master Degree in Nursing or a Doctor of Nursing Practice:

When reviewing colleges and universities, it is best to check the following:

- In-State vs Out of State Tuition
- Internships
- Scholarships
- Career Placement upon graduation
- Course work and offered classes
- Post-Graduate Degrees - Master and Doctoral

Scholarship applications can start to be submitted during your Junior year and will continue throughout your Senior year in high school. It is best to ask your Academic Advisor/School Counselor on the timeline process as well. Scholarship applications will have specific deadlines and requirements to meet in order to be submitted for review and consideration.

You may want to start to compile your resume/portfolio since a majority of scholarship applications will require academic grade point average (GPA), academic accomplishments, school activities (clubs, sports, etc.), community involvement (volunteer, church, etc.), academic and personal recommendations, etc. There may be essay requirements on why you are a qualified candidate to receive the scholarship, what your future goals are academically and professionally and other questions centering around who you are, your beliefs, etc.

Here are a couple of links for College Scholarships:

Also, it will be best to check with the colleges and universities that you will be applying to. You can check with the School/Department of your desired major, the Campus Career Center and the Register's Office for additional information for college scholarships and grants and specific requirements for qualifications.

Best wishes for your education and career path in Nursing!
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Michelle’s Answer

Hello, Christina !

I would be happy to answer your question and give some advice about Certified Nursing Aid/Assistant work.

The duties that CNAs are trained for and allowed to do are : They can draw blood in some states if they go for phlebotomy training, administer medication, test blood sugar, do wound dressing changes, sputum tests, take and record vitals, report condition of patient to supervisor, clean, transfer, toilet, bathe and dress patient, position or reposition patient, and feed or help feed patient.

Along with obtaining CNA certification you may want to consider going for Home Health Care training so that you can broaden your choice of where you may want to work.

I hope that this was of some help and I wish you well !