Thursday, October 1, 2009

Certified Nursing Assistant Jobs

By Melanie Ullman
Do you enjoy working with people and are compassionate about wanting to improve someone’s quality of life? Are you looking for a career in health care but do not have the time to go to school full time to become a registered nurse but want to see if the medical field is for you? If so then taking looking for certified nursing assistant (CNA) jobs would be the first step before enrolling in CNA training to become certified.

A certified nursing assistant was also known as an orderly, nurses aide, patient care technician or home health worker and works under the supervision of a nurse to give help to patients with their daily tasks. A certified nurse assistant works very closely with the patients on a daily basis helping them bathe, with grooming, feeding them and assisting the nurse with any medical equipment and checking vital signs like blood pressure, temperature and heart rates.

Certified nursing assistants provide vital information on their patient’s daily emotional and physical well being and give patients some social and emotional support as well. Many registered nurses got their start as certified nursing assistants and are better because of that early experience. The nice thing about certified nursing assistant (CAN) jobs are that you do not need a bachelor’s or even an associate’s degree to get one. The requirements are that you have at least a GED and have passed a six to twelve week certified nursing assistant certificate program from your local community college, online educational institution or medical facility.

Some of the subjects you can expect to study will be biology, physiology, anatomy, nutrition, infection control and some basic nursing skills. There will be plenty of opportunity for hands on learning in clinical activities. Each state has different qualifications you need to meet so check with the state medical board for the specific qualifications you will need to become a certified nursing assistant. Home health workers can be certified through the National Association for Home Care.

As the American population continues to age the market for certified nursing assistant (CAN) jobs will continue to increase. Certified nursing assistants work in the home health field in private homes, in nursing homes, mental hospitals, assisted living facilities and regular hospitals. You can expect to start at around $20,000 and can reach almost $40,000 depending on your years of experience and the facility that you work for.

If you are not sure what educational institution to use for your certification you can check out the classified ads and many times assisted living centers or nursing homes will offer the opportunity to earn while you learn to be a certified nursing assistant. This is usually offered to those who do not have any prior medical experience. You will be required to work for some stated period of time after gaining your certification and that the institution may offer to pay for your state exam as well. You will need to pass both the practical and knowledge portions of the CNA skills test to receive your certificate.


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