The Importance of Honesty as a Certified Nursing Assistant

As a certified nursing assistant, you are required to adhere to numerous laws and regulations. However important, perhaps the most valuable trait for any CNA to possess is honesty. When dealing with sensitive subject matters and working alongside advanced-level medical equipment, you must strive to gain the trust of all you work with, including the patient. The most effective way to do so, outside of performing at the best of your ability, is to work with pure honesty throughout all situations.

Avoid Lawsuits

While no certified nursing assistant ever wants to consider the possibility of being sued, if you operate under dishonest behavior, it’s only a matter of time before your dishonesty leads to a failure of regulations. For example, there is a shift change and in a rush you forgot to remove a vial of the narcotics from your tray or counter top. Suddenly, the unattended drugs are swooped up by a patient and incorrectly consumed, causing severe illness or death. At this point, you could either deny your involvement or be honest and suffer the consequences. While honesty may lead to disciplinary action from your employer, it’s less likely to be sued for wrongful death or medical malpractice if you instantly come clean about your absent mindedness.

Establish Trust Among Co-Workers

Dishonesty is the biggest way to eliminate all trust given to you from nursing and physician staff. In the world of a certified nursing assistant, you must gain the trust of superiors in order to fully delve into procedures and patient care. Earning a reputation as a dishonest employee may not only eliminate any possibility of independent work, but in severe cases, it may result in employment termination. Unfortunately, medical workplaces, like any other, are ruled by politics. If you desire to go far with your newly-budding career, focus on being as transparent and honest as possible.

Gain True Knowledge

Let’s pretend you’re dealing with a patient who’s suffering from a myriad of symptoms. In an attempt to progress your education, the registered nurse asks if you understand what’s happening in terms of treatment and diagnosis. A dishonest CNA who wishes to be considered smarter than he actually is will say, “Yes, I understand,” even if he doesn’t. This eliminates the possibility of truly learning from more experienced nurses. An honest CNA reply, “No, could you explain?” The only way to progress in this career path is to acknowledge weaknesses in your knowledge base. This honesty is always rewarded with factual information to progress your knowledge and career.

How to Work as a CNA in Day Cares

While traditional certified nursing assistant jobs revolve around healthcare facilities such as hospitals or nursing homes, this adaptable profession offers other employment opportunities. If you’re interested in working with children, or the elderly, outside of a medical facility then you may be interested in pursing CNA certification online to build towards a career in child or adult day cares. It’s important to note, working in such environments may require specialized training or certification. Check with your state’s nursing board to determine employment eligibility requirements.

Child Care Facilities

Working as a certified nursing assistant in child care facilities is not as common as one might think. Typically, a day care hires a registered nurse who specializes in children; however, CNAs may be hired to assist the primary nurse with daily duties. These positions are typically found in larger child care centers or in more affluent day care centers. The primary employer for this particular field is typically school systems. CNAs work alongside the school nurse to take vital signs and assist in other daily duties. If you’re unable to find the aforementioned positions, consider expanding your search to hospital pediatric units. Keep in mind, you may be required to undergo additional coursework and certification to practice in pediatric wards.

Adult Care Facilities

Although certified nursing assistants are commonly employed in nursing homes, if you wish to work in a different environment while still tending to the elderly then adult day care facilities may be your ideal option. CNAs in this position work under the direct supervision of the primary nurse to assist in medication delivery, vital sign monitoring and general care. Although patients are typically in better health than those in nursing homes, special training and certification may be required by your state.

Additional Training Requirements

As mentioned several times, your state’s nursing board may require further training to work in specialized facilities. In order to determine whether or not your state requires additional training and possibly specialized certification, contact the nursing board. In the meantime, navigate your web browser to the licensing division or nursing board for your state. Review the Nursing Assistant Candidate Handbook to uncover current training requirements. While reviewing this manual, you’ll also learn specifics regarding exam units and even practice questions to help prepare for the examination.

Working as a certified nursing assistant offers a host of potential career opportunities. Whether you enjoy working with children, adults or even in specialized care units, certified nursing assistants are vital to the entire medical team. Explore your CNA job opportunities to make the most out of this diverse and dynamic career.

Personality Traits of Top Certified Nursing Assistants

As with any other profession in which interpersonal interaction is a major aspect of the daily job duties, the most successful CNAs are those with very specific personality traits. Although exceptions obviously exist regarding this list, according to the latest career poles and surveys performed by leading medical facilities, the following personality traits are vital to becoming a successful and prosperous Certified Nursing Assistant.

Top Characteristics of a Good CNA

As you embark on your journey to develop your medical career through nurse aide courses and training, you will encounter a variety of job performance metrics that directly impact the quality of patient care. The following characteristics of a successful nursing assistance have been adapted from a number of online CNA resources. These traits are essential to your job performance and success as a CNA.

Compassionate – Throughout most of your work days you may be required to be intimately involved with a wide array of physical or mental issues. A compassionate personality is able to handle delicate issues without sacrificing the integrity and pride of a patient.

Optimistic Outlook – When dealing with patients who are faced with serious illnesses or prolonged recovery periods, a drop of optimism is enough to change the entire outlook a patient may have. Since CNAs work directly with the daily life of patients, they have a unique opportunity to enhance their recovery by injecting a sense of hope and optimism even during the roughest waters.

Cooperative with Staff – While your work as a CNA is primarily around patients, you are required to deal hand-in-hand with an entire team. Whether you’re working alongside a group of registered nurses or assisting a physician during procedures or examinations, a CNA must be able to seamlessly integrate with the various demands of these situations. The most successful nursing assistants are those that understand their role and do their hardest to support, not overpower, their co-workers.

Longstanding Determination – When working a 12-hour shift and dealing with difficult patients, it’s easy to lose your determination. Keep your work quality top-notch and your patient-interactions pleasant by being determined. Focus on a primary goal throughout your shift, such as maintaining a positive attitude, and work your hardest to accomplish this goal.

Adaptability – When working in fast-paced medical environments, such as a hospital, you must become well-versed in constant change. You may go from dealing with a somewhat sick child to someone who’s on their last breath within a matter of minutes. Therefore, in order to succeed at this position, you must learn how to adapt and mold your focus based upon a present situation. If it takes you more than a few moments to change gears and provide a new situation your 100% undivided attention, then you may want to consider a slower-paced work environment, such as a walk-in clinic.

Career Options for Certified Nursing Assistants

Many professionals who enter the medical industry as a certified nursing assistant have bigger goals in sight. This career option is the ideal choice for those who have very little working knowledge about various medical careers and wish to experience the hyper-dynamic environment that is the healthcare industry. If you’re interested in becoming a certified nursing assistant, but with to use this training and work experience as a jumping-off point to a more advanced-level career, then you’ll be surprised at the number of options available to you.

Registered Nurse

So what is CNA Certification in the grand scheme of nursing, and what career paths does it lead to? After working as a certified nursing assistant, you may be drawn to advance your career and begin training as a registered nurse. While becoming a registered nurse, or RN, requires at least an associate’s degree in nursing, your training and experience as a CNA will simplify more complex learning topics. Not only are CNAs set apart from the crowd through their training, but by working alongside actual registered nurses, your practical experience and clinical knowledge is much greater than that of someone who’s never worked in the medical field.

A career as a RN is not only professionally rewarding, but with an average annual salary of $65,000 in the United States, this profession is quite lucrative as well. As with many other healthcare-related careers, the job forecast according to the U.S. Department of Labor is expected to increase by 19-percent, which breaks down to over 500,000 new jobs by the year 2022.

Licensed Practical Nurse

Licensed practical nurses, also known as licensed vocational nurses, report to registered nurses but have more responsibilities than a certified nursing assistant. The typical duties of an LPN/LVN include collecting samples, performing routine laboratory tests and providing interpersonal patient care. While exact job functions of an LPN/LVN are limited by your state’s nursing board, this is an excellent career opportunity for CNAs who wish to expand the scope of their practice without having to undergo such intense and prolonged training/certification registered nurse careers require. Typically, to become an LPN you must take a certification training program then pass your state’s LPN examination. If you’ve already received your CNA certification, then this process will be quite familiar.

Although the average annual salary of a licensed practical nurse is not as high as a registered nurse, it is still substantially more than what certified nursing assistants bring home each year. With an average annual salary of just over $40,000 and a 25-percent increase in jobs by the year 2022, this is a financially stable and reliable career option for certified nursing assistants.