Would I Succeed As a CNA?
Demand for qualified Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) shows no sign of slowing down at hospitals, nursing homes and other medical care facilities. Given that jobs in this field are expected to grow by 18% during the next decade, those who possess the appropriate skills and traits will have outstanding employment opportunities. To see if you have the qualities you'll need to do well in this occupation, answer these questions:
|Do you have strong communication skills?||Yes or No|
|Do you consider yourself compassionate?||Yes or No|
|Are you physically fit?||Yes or No|
|Are you organized?||Yes or No|
|Do medical subjects interest you?||Yes or No|
|Is safety important to you?||Yes or No|
|Do you remain calm during emergencies?||Yes or No|
|Do you pay attention to details?||Yes or No|
|Do you have emotional strength?||Yes or No|
|Do you consider yourself upbeat?||Yes or No|
|Are you open to working unusual schedules?||Yes or No|
Why Are These Qualities Significant?
Do you have strong communication skills?
The ability to communicate effectively - both verbally and in writing - is one of the most important requirements for this career. These skills are needed to communicate patient conditions to nurses and doctors, to maintain patient records, to explain activities and tasks to patients and their families, and to exchange information with peers.
Do you consider yourself compassionate?
A CNA's responsibilities include bathing, feeding and cleaning up after patients who may be very ill and, often, are elderly. You should have a strong desire to help and take care of people.
Are you physically fit?
CNAs spend most of their shifts on their feet, often lifting and moving patients and medical equipment. You will need physical strength, stamina and endurance.
Are you organized?
CNAs who work in a nursing home, for example, care for many patients at once, juggling tasks such as providing basic care, monitoring medical conditions and maintaining patient records. You will need to be able to manage your time well and be very organized.
Do medical subjects interest you?
While CNAs do not need advanced medical training, to succeed in this career you should have an interest in medicine and will need knowledge of common medical conditions and their symptoms.
Is safety important to you?
The patients CNAs care for are typically frail and, when working in an elder care facility, may be confused or disoriented. You will need to be vigilant about safety procedures to ensure that neither they nor you get injured.
Do you remain calm during emergencies?
As the primary caregiver in many facilities, CNAs may be the first to respond when an emergency arises. You will need to remain calm, assess the situation, obtain the medical help required and be able to administer basic treatments such as CPR.
Do you pay attention to details?
CNAs follow the medical orders of doctors and nurses in the day-to-day care of patients. Because a patient's wellbeing, and possibly their life, depends upon your following those orders correctly, you will need to pay strict attention to details.
Do you have emotional strength?
CNAs witness people who are sick and in pain every day, and patients with whom they have formed relationships may die. You will need to be emotionally stable and balanced to work well in this environment for an extended period of time.
Do you consider yourself upbeat?
A CNA should have an upbeat personality and optimistic outlook to keep themselves and patients motivated and encouraged on a daily basis.
Are you open to working unusual schedules?
Due to the 24/7 nature of patient care, CNAs may be required to work long shifts, overnight hours, or on a rotating schedule.
What Should I Do Next?
Were your answers to most of these questions 'Yes'? If so, you are a good fit for this career! You will need to complete an educational program approved by your state and pass an exam to measure your competency. These programs are typically about two months in duration and include both academic and hands-on training.