CNAs play a vital role in healthcare profession while they work under the careful eye of a Registered Nurse (RN) it is expected that they have a good knowledge of CNA job skills. With medical insurance companies like Medicare and Medicaid advocating the importance of CNAs in bringing down the cost of medical care, the demand for CNAs is increasing constantly.
A CNA provides physical or mental assistance to patients who are ill or injured and the average salary of CNA in America is $25,000, but to draw such salary and to make a career progression in nursing career you have very good CNA nursing abilities. The main proficiencies of a CNA can be described as follows:
- Communication skills In any profession it is necessary to have good communication and more so in the healthcare profession as confusion can lead to health hazards. It is important that you ask the permission of the residents before entering their rooms; you must respect a person’s privacy and introduce yourself at first contact. You must warmly greet the patients every time you meet them and explain all the procedures before starting. You will work as a communication bridge between the resident and nurse and the various departments of a hospital, you should be able to communicate all their records and reports. If you are working at a patient’s home you must communicate effectively to the family membersso that all the supplies of medicine and other healthcare related stuff can be obtained in a timely manner and hygienic atmosphere in the house can be maintained.
- Patient Assistance Skills A CNA should be able to educate the residents about all the required aspects of healthcare as it will ease the process and the client will be more comfortable. A CNA has to assist patients in transfer from bed to stretcher or wheel chair; in transfers CNA must help clients walk and avoid getting hurt. Transfers are required for routine checkups and the patient has to be moved from one department to another. Other duties of CNA include bathing and showering during which the they must be made to sit in a certain position to avoid any risks. CNAs are also responsible for dressing and grooming needs of the patients and must be able to do this skillfully.
- Procedure skills CNAs have to perform many tasks which require certain procedures to follow and they must be well aware of all such procedures. While providing for bedpan, placing it at the right place is important and after placing it the nurse aide can go behind the scene; keep the call bell handy for the resideny so that you can come back when required. In oral and dental care duties you must have the complete knowledge of the process and should provide emesis basin where required.You must be able to take vital signs like temperature, blood pressure and pulse and should follow the best processes in taking the signs; record them correctly and report the changes to the nurse. You must know the process of changing bed position of patients and changing bed linen of occupied beds. You must know all the procedure for these various tasks and stringently follow the procedures as it will make sure that the patient’s comfort is taken care of.
- Skills in Safety In the healthcare field safety of patients is of utmost importance and to serve them safely you must practice tasks in safety. While the patient transfers you must make sure that you use gait belt; before starting the procedure check if the resident is comfortable right through the process and make sure they are not hurt by safety rails. Use gloves whenever you come in contact with the patient or any fluids except while feeding. Wash your hands properly before and after every task and maintain clean surroundings to control infection.Many rules and policies are drafted for the safety of the staff and residents; you must have thorough knowledge of all these policies and must follow them to ensure safety for all. Following all the safety parameters while performing your CNA duties is very important; in fact you can even consider it as mandatory.
- Other skills There are some miscellaneous CNA skills that will help you in becoming a good nursing assistant and prosper in the healthcare career. You must be agile not only in performing your duties but also in thinking so that you can take proactive actions in times of emergency; but you must know your limits and should not go overboard and do tasks that are not a part of your job responsibility. Hospital and nursing home CNAs have to perform multiple duties so agility is an essential quality that you must possess.
You must carry out a CNA skills review at regular intervals to check your abilities and update them whenever required by enrolling in review courses. You must be empathetic and compassionate towards the residents; many may think these are qualities but in reality these are important task if you want to succeed as a nurse aide.
Providing residents care is the primary duty of a CNA and to do this effectively you must have all the CNA job skills mentioned above and if you continue education you can ensure a successful nursing career.
James Markham is a Blogger from Ohio USA. He is also a medical student of MBBS 2nd prof at Northeast Ohio Medical University. Read more about him