Certified Nursing Aides perform the “hands-on care” for patients in hospitals, nursing homes and in a patient’s home.
Certified Nursing Aides, or C.N.A.’s may also be referred to as a “State Tested Nurse Aides” or “Registered Nursing Assistants” in some states.
Upon satisfactory completion of a C.N.A. training program and passing a state-administered exam (these are regulated by the Department of Health in each state), a certificate is issued. The renewals vary by state and may require continuing education or just active employment within a certain period of time.
In a hospital or nursing home, the C.N.A. is part of the care team administering the needed care and supports the Licensed Practical Nurse, Registered Nurse and Physician.
Background checks are required for Certified Nursing Aide program enrollment. When hiring someone with a Certified Nursing Aide certificate, Senior Home Care Agencies have the extra insurance of knowing the individual previously passed a Background Check and has met a certain level of competency.
Most state C.N.A. training programs require a minimum of 75 hours of classroom training which must include16 hours of supervised clinical training. This way the student has the chance to apply their skills in an institutional nursing setting.
C.N.A. programs teach students to adequately assist someone with all their Activities of Daily Living (ADLs).
Caregiverlist provides Certified Nursing Aide training labs, skills tests and senior care briefs for caregivers.
C.N.A. Training includes:
- How to communicate with a patient
- Infection control
- Safety and emergency procedures
- Residents’ rights
- Basic nursing skills
- Personal care skills
- Feeding techniques (feeding tubes)
- Skin care (methods to avoid bed sores and to treat bed sores)
- How to transfer safely
- How to position
- Dressing and ambulating patients
- Range-of-motion exercises
- Interacting with cognitively impaired patients
- Learning the signs and symptoms of common diseases
A Certified Nursing Aide must show a copy of their certificate to verify their training and that their certification is active. Must also have a criminal history background check with no disqualifying convictions or have requested and received a waiver of those disqualifying convictions.
Most states maintain a registry to list all Certified Nursing Aides and anyone who has an administrative finding of abuse, neglect or misappropriated property is removed.
Sometimes a Registered Nurse or Licensed Practical Nurse will work as a C.N.A. while they are completing their education or studying to pass their final board exams, as they are able to meet all the training requirements.
Keep in mind that senior home care is considered “non-medical” care and even though Certified Nursing Aides have had complete training, this type of work is not considered medical because it does not require a Physician or Registered Nurse to administer.