In spite of what many people may think, it is relatively easy to become a CNA, or Certified Nurses Aid. Of course, there are certain CNA certification requirements that must be met, but all in all, the process is simple and straight forward. Students must obtain classroom and on the job training, and a written exam is administered, along with a demonstration of techniques learned.
There are many healthcare facilities that offer free CNA classes and on the job training where the student is paid as they learn. There are several facilities that offer this type of program, with the stipulation that the student work for a specified amount of time in the facility after certification. Many Registered Nurses started out as CNA’s in this type of setting.
To enroll in CNA classes, the student must have a first aid certification, and many facilities require a high school diploma. This requirement is state mandated, so to be sure, check the regulations of the state where you live. There is a good chance that you may not need a high school diploma to become a CNA where you live, since CNA certification requirements vary from state to state.
Classroom training will concentrate on many of the aspects of healthcare in general, and a good part of the learning will be common sense. Subjects like nutrition, medical terminology, and basic nursing will be covered, and proper techniques of bathing and feeding patients who are not able to do so for themselves. Learning the medical terminology is essential as it allows the CNA to communicate any concerns to the Nursing supervisor.
The student will learn the different methods used for lifting and transporting the patient safely, and what the various pieces of equipment are used for and how to operate them. Classroom training will also discuss the rights of each patient, privacy issues, and confidentiality, as well as how to communicate with the family members when they visit.
On the job training will put into use everything the CNA student has learned in the classroom. Under the supervision of a superior, the student will have hands on training in bathing the patient, feeding them if necessary, proper grooming and dressing, and various other duties. A CNA will also learn how to take vitals, and in some instances may be required to administer certain medications under the watchful eye of the Nursing staff.
A CNA candidate will be required to spend a lot of hours on his or her feet in an extremely busy setting, so being in good physical condition is a must. They will also need to have an abundance of patience and be able to work in stressful situations since there is a shortage of nursing help and they may have to do extra shifts if needed. Kindness and compassion are key qualities for any good CNA, also.
There will be a written exam and a demonstration of all the topics covered in class to show that the candidate has learned well everything associated with good patient care. Once this is over and you pass the exam, the CNA certificate will be issued by the state and you will be able to work anywhere in that state as a CNA.