Author Archives: Tina A. Perry
Author Archives: Tina A. Perry
CNAs support staff in various health care settings by providing basic care to nursing patients. If you love being on the front-lines and supporting patients’ day-to-day needs, CNA might be the right career for you.
If you’re interested in a job in the health care field you might have considered becoming a registered nurse, or an RN. Becoming a nurse is expensive and takes time, which is why many nurses start out as Certified Nursing Assistants, or CNAs.
Here are the answers to some common questions about becoming a CNA:
For most CNA training programs in the US, the minimum age is 18. Some states allow applicants who are 16 or 17 with parental consent. High school students looking to start a career when they graduate can get help on how to start by speaking to their high school counselors to see what programs are available.
Although they differ from state to state, most CNA programs take 4 to 12 weeks and involve both classroom time and clinical training.
CNA training is really not that hard and many CNA’s can vouch for that. You will be assigned a study book which you will be required to read, be prepared to be quizzed on it and talk in-depth on the subject. So as long as you’ll do the required reading and study you should be fine. The majority of the CNA’s find the clinical and skills test to be most challenging so our advice is to study your skills and practice them as much as possible. Don’t stress out about the clinical part, you are there to learn after all and as long as you show up every day for the lectures and stay positive, you will breeze through it. Depending on the length of your course and your states’ requirement of clinical hours and classroom time, it take can anywhere from a few weeks to a 3 months to obtain certification.
If you are in the process of completing CNA training or are thinking about working in this field, a typical CNA work day only slightly varies depending on where they’re working, be it a nursing home, hospital or private duty. Typically, a CNA average work day can be quite hectic depending on the shift involved. You will work alongside with typically three or four other members and do the rounds (toileting, repositioning, etc.) Once a member leaves home for the shift, you usually get a report. You get breakfast/lunch/supper ready and server it depending on your shift. You ensure patients are dressed and up, brush teeth/denture care basic morning care. During feeding times, you walk around ensure that no-one is choking or having difficulties in eating and clear out trays when finished. Nurses will typically give you a report and a list of vitals to do. The report will contain a list of people assigned for you to shower, lotion and change them. You prep lines and make up beds. You also ensure patients are getting their daily walks and help them achieve that (those than can). During the day there will a number of call bells that you’ll need to answer since many patients will need to revisit the bathroom. And the rest of patients will have to be re-checked/changed again, check cath bags, take vitals and check briefs again. You will need to document your progress and check in with the nurse to see if there are any special duties they need you to attend to. A CNA’s day can be quite hectic and while they work in teams and assist each other when necessary, it can still get a little overwhelming at times.
Being a CNA can be physically and emotionally challenging, but if you’re a compassionate people person who doesn’t have a problem with being around sick people or bodily fluids it can be very rewarding. According to BLS 2016 stats, pay ranges from $9.64 to $18.22. Some may find that pay low for how hard CNAs work, but keep in mind there’s room for growth if you start as a CNA and continue your education.
As a full-time (and sometimes part-time working a certain number of hours) CNA, you should be eligible for many benefits and programs, including: medical, dental and vision benefits, paid leave, a retirement plan, tuition assistance, and more.
To become a CNA, you must pass a multiple choice and a skills test, which varies from state-to-state. Prepare by making sure you can list and perform the tasks you learned in training (practicing on friends and family helps). Listen carefully to instructions during the exam and get clarification if needed. Also, remember small things like knocking on patients’ door before entering and proper hand-washing procedures.
Because training for CNAs is fast and easily accessible in most states, there are a lot of CNAs in their late teens and early 20s. However, it’s not uncommon to see CNAs who are somewhat older (50s and 60s, for example). If you’re a compassionate and hard-working person who is physically capable, you can be a CNA. There are fewer older CNAs in most places because the work can be physically demanding (like lifting and moving patients) and because many CNAs go on to become LVNs and RNs.
Yes. Being a CNA is a great first step to take before becoming an RN. It allows you to see if the health care field is right for you, gives you experience, will help you pay for nursing school, and allows you to work closely with RNs and supervisors in the field.
CNAs can choose from many possible work settings and opportunities, including hospitals, nursing homes, residential care facilities, and long-term care homes. CNAs perform basic patient care duties and have less responsibility in terms of decision making compared to other staff they work alongside.
Nurse aide duties include helping medical staff take care of patients in hospitals and long-term care homes. They help patients with basic needs, like feeding and bathing. Nurse aides are also trained to perform basic medical duties, like taking patients’ blood pressure, temperature, and pulse to monitor vitals. They report changes or concerns to a doctor or supervisor.
The main difference between a CNA and a CMA is that CNA positions involve direct patient care in hospitals, nursing homes, and other care facilities. CMA positions involve things like prepping patients, performing clerical duties, and ensuring that exam rooms are sterile, stocked, and ready to go in settings like medical centers and urgent care clinics. CMAs require more in-depth medical knowledge; therefore, they go to school longer and are typically paid more than CNAs.
One big difference between CNAs and LVNs is in their training. CNAs are trained in basic patient care, which usually takes place in under 200 hours over the course of several weeks. LVN training is a more detailed and can take one or two years to complete. LVNs have more responsibility than CNAs and are required to continue their education and work in the field in order to maintain their license. Both jobs require employees to keep up with certifications every two years.
In some places, you can become a CNA by taking a six-week course at a community college. Although they perform basic duties, CNAs are one of patients’ main caregivers. RNs, on the other hand, must go through a state-approved nursing program or go for a 2 to 4-year degree and have less involvement with patients. Compared to CNAs who have minimal decision-making capabilities and need to be trained in basic patient care, RNs have much more responsibility. Some RN duties include providing treatments as per doctors’ orders, operating medical equipment, and overseeing other staff such as LVNs and CNAs.
The biggest difference between CNAs and HHAs is that HHAs can give patients medication and CNAs cannot. Both positions are entry level and have a lot of duties that overlap, but they work in different settings. HHAs work with patients in their own homes rather than in facility or hospital settings.
A CNA pre employment test is quite similar to a state exam so just go over all of the topics you learned for your CNA exam. In total there can be between 28-50 questions and a lot of them are common sense questions as well as situational/skill based ones. Be familiar with the basic CNA knowledge test and re-familiarize yourself with the knowing all the vitals thresholds, i.e. the normal temperature ranges, pulse, BP, respiration, O2 stats etc.
Studying to become a CNA can be a great first step towards a career in nursing. It can also be a fulfilling career on its own. Demand for CNAs is high and there are many potential places for new CNAs to work!
Interested in making the move from CNA to LPN?
A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) can advance their careers in the nursing field by completing a CNA to LPN program. Many universities, hospitals and nursing organizations offer bridge programs. They work by allowing CNAs to take their previous educational units and applying them towards an LPN course.
When a person becomes a CNA, they have to complete a specific amount of required courses. This is a part of the legal and certification requirements for this field. CNA courses that can be applied toward this program will vary by each institution. However, the following courses can usually be applied toward a bridge program:
Each bridge program has a set of requirements that CNAs are expected to meet before they can be admitted into an LPN training course. CNAs will need a current CNA license. They must also have a specified amount of experience that is determined by state requirements.
A CNA must provide a copy of their transcripts and have a 2.0 grade point average or higher. Due to employment laws, CNAs are expected to be at least 18 years of age in order to enter a bridge program.
Most bridge programs will take less time to complete than traditional LPN programs. Since CNAs are using previous courses that they already obtained, a bridge program could allow them to finish within 9 months to a year. This amount of time is a lot less than the traditional 2 year LPN programs.
Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVNs), is practically the same thing as a LPN. The main difference is simply the name itself. LVN's practice in two states: Texas and California. Similarly to an LPN, becoming a licensed vocational nurse requires completing an approved educational program. However, differences exist depending on the state.
Another way that a CNA can become an LPN is by completing a traditional LPN program. Many LPN programs are made available at universities, community colleges, nursing schools and hospitals. The average LPN program takes around 2 years to complete. CNA students probably won’t be able to use previous credits that they earned from their CNA licensing towards their credits.
Students should also keep in mind that a traditional LPN program can sometimes be longer than 2 years. This depends on the organization that is offering the course and how much instruction that they are giving to their students. Students who are required to take an extended LPN course will typically receive greater compensation once they complete the program.
When a CNA starts an LPN nursing program, they will have to register with an organization that is offering the coursework. Once they are admitted, they will then begin working toward an associate’s degree in nursing.
They will then be instructed with educational courses and hands on practical experience. After completing their degree, they will be required to take an LPN exam and pass the test in order to obtain their license. CNAs that are able to earn their licenses will then be ready to work in the medical field as an LPN.
Some hospitals can also help CNAs to facilitate their LPN training by substituting practical experience on the job for educational coursework. A CNA might have to complete coursework because of legal state requirements. In some cases, these two can either be waved for experience or completed at a university training hospital.
Some nursing schools also offer accelerated programs for students. A few of the programs take only about a year to a year and a half to complete.
CNAs that decide to become an LPN will typically have to meet state, boards of nursing and university requirements. They can find out more information that is expected of them within their particular state from the State Board of Nursing.
CNA students will typically have more experience over traditional students due to their previous experience and education. Their experience should help to make it easier for them to complete a CNA to LPN course.
There were 724,500 employed LPNs in 2016 and not surprising the largest employer were nursing homes(38%), hospitals employed 16% of LPN’s, followed by physician’s offices (13%), home healthcare services(12%) and government coming in last at 7%.
District of Columbia
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, data extracted on December 20, 2017
The job outlook for LPNs is pretty strong. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH) number of jobs available will increase by over 88,600 from 2016-2026. This is an increase of 12% which is faster than average for all jobs. The requirement for highly qualified LPNs will increase due to the high number of baby boomers and the current nursing shortage. Median yearly salary for LPNs is $44,090. Licensed practical nurses’ salary varies and can range from $32,510 to over $60,420 depending on the industry worked, education and experience.
For nurses and future nurses-in-the-making with a lot to carry, backpacks can be a lifesaver. Backpacks offer a convenient way for nurses (especially travel nurses and nursing students) to carry around all of their paperwork, reference manuals and books, and any other thing you need to keep handy while on your rounds (that includes snacks!)
As a nursing students, however, you'll need a college backpack that is durable, has a lot of pockets, and complements your nursing personality. Since you may not have time to dig through the 5,000+ options for a nurse backpack, this article should you make it a whole easier to find the perfect one.
Nurse Mates' Ultimate Nursing Bag
High Sierra Loop Backpack
Fafada Nursing Backpack
SwissGear Travel Gear Backpack
Best Suits: Travel nurses, home nurses and medical nursing students who need to store a lot of stuff and take it with them on a short trips.
Nurse Mates, the nursing and medical supplies store that sells the bag, is bold enough to call this “The Ultimate Nursing Bag” because it is designed to meet a nurse’s (or student's) every need.
The “Ultimate Nursing Bag” is a hit with home care nurses and travel nurses because of its many pockets able to hold everything from your lunch to your iPad, laptop, and a couple of binders and pen. The pockets and extra space along make it something that nurses should pay attention to.
The bag is made of water-resistant fabric, which is good for working in places where you run into water or other liquids on a regular basis!) and comes in a variety of prints and colors.
Nurse Mates' is a legend when it comes to the best med school backpack with over 400+ reviews on Amazon and an average of 4.4 stars which has been rated similarly on other sites as well.
Best suits: Nursing students, Backpackers, Commuters, Hikers, Day Trips.
If you are comfort driven then this awesome backpack is the one for you. Made by the reputable High Sierra who are well-known for their innovative and high-quality backpack designs you are guaranteed quality.
Decently priced given the quality and functionality of this backpack it comes with adjustable compression straps, a monster hook, shoulder straps with a suspension system, organizer with a key fob and a dedicated sleeve for your tablet.
The suspension system will provide much needed relief when carrying heavier loads like textbooks, big binders or camping gear! It's water resistant which is a big plus and has a padded shoulder strap. If you are a music lover or a podcast listener, the backpack also has a dedicated media pocket with a headphone port.
Overall High Sierra Loop Backpack is a reasonably priced and versatile backpack with lots of extras with minimal wear and tear even under the toughest conditions. This the best backpack for nursing students if you're looking for a LARGE bag that's dependable and durable.
Best suits: Nursing students, nurses and medical staff for everyday usage.
If you want a backpack that looks and feels like a traditional backpack, then the Jansport Right Pack backpack is probably for you. It is designed for everyday wear and tear like carrying your books to the car.
The backpack is made of a traditional nylon/polyester fabric with padded suede leather on the bottom. It comes in a variety of colors and is washable (sort of). One key thing to look out for is the leather at the bottom. Some customers who had this backpack reported problems with this. Fortunately, the backpack comes with a lifetime warranty so things can be patched up at a no charge (as long as it’s within warranty guidelines).
Best suits: Nurses, aides and other medical staff who prefer a stylish yet spacious backpacks.
For those nursing students who want an inexpensive yet aesthetically pleasing backpack, the Fafada Canvas Backpack is another great option. This multi-functional backpack has plenty of space to handle all of your carrying needs from clothing and college materials right down to your iPad. Other features of the backpack focus on comfort and durability with adjustable straps, well designed clasps, side and front pockets and a padded pocket on the inside of the bag for sensitive hardware like a laptop. The bag has well-placed pockets that are actually accessible and don't bulk up the bag.
This durable canvas bag will make an excellent backpack choice for college students, weekend trekking trips or hikes. Overall if you carry a lot of items on a daily basis and need a stylish yet dependable backpack give the Fafada a try.
Best suits: Travel nurses and medical staff who do a lot of travelling.
If you want something a little more heavy duty than the backpacks above, you might consider the SwissGear Travel Gear Scansmart Backpack. This durable backpack is built for those who need to carry a lot from place to place. The backpack features specific compartments and pockets for your laptop and water bottles along with mesh pockets for any small items that you might be carrying around with you, such as pens or pads.
The Scansmart Backpack is built for the traveler so it comes with features designed to keep things dry including its airflow back system, which is designed to keep the perspiration away from the bag. The backpack is also equipped with padding in several places including the handle and steady zippers to keep everything organized and put away.
Carrying between 20 and 40 pounds of textbooks on a daily basis is certainly no easy feat on your back. You can't put a price on convenience and your well-being.
When shopping for the best nursing student backpack bear in mind you'll need a backpack that is large enough to carry all of your textbook materials for multiple classes, lunch and snacks, laptop, and a sweatshirt for those cranked AC rooms.
Our selection of medical bags for nurses will help get you started and we recommend investing a little money for this all-important purchase since it will be with you for a number of years.
What nursing school book bag do you wear?
All around the world, nursing is one of the most sought after careers. Applying to many nursing schools is the key for prospective students.
Although the demand for registered nurses (RN) is high, the competition for admittance to nursing programs is stiff. Before applying, it is wise to obtain the best credentials possible.
Career opportunities for nurses await not only in hospitals, doctors offices and patients homes, but outside patient care as well. Nurses work directly with and look after patients. But the nurse’s career is not limited to patient care alone. Nurse informatics and legal nurse consulting are the other job options available for registered nurses who wish to work outside patient care.
In nurse informatics, nurses need to assist other nurses to get accessibility and utilize the computerized information. Legal nurse consulting careers require nurses to work with lawyers. There is a continuous demand for vast number of nurses in patient care. While working with patients, nurses can also choose to do specialization right from neonatology to hospice care.
In addition the job positions of nurse practitioners and nurse anesthetist are also some of the preferred career options for nurses in the healthcare industry. Working as a nurse practitioner, the nurse would be functioning more like a physician’s assistant, providing direct patient care. On the other hand, nurse anesthetists have become a much preferred option for healthcare providers in order to save money spent on hiring anesthesiologists (who earn as high as $300,000 annually).
Responsibilities of registered nurses include: promote patients’ health, prevent diseases and help patients in the treatment of their illnesses. While working at hospitals, nurses keep patients under keen observation and record illness symptoms as well as the improvements in a patient’s health and report it to the physicians. Not only that, nurses also function as assistants to physicians during surgeries and other treatments. Registered nurses are also required to work out nursing care plans and provide patients with necessary instructions.
The largest group of nurses is comprised of hospital nurses. Licensed practical nurses (LPN) work under the supervision of these hospital nurses. Usually, hospital nurses are assigned specific hospital departments which may include maternity, pediatrics, surgery, intensive care, emergency room etc. There are other nurses who have the responsibility of functioning in multiple departments.
Office nurses perform their patient care work at the physician’s office. The everyday job responsibilities of nurses may vary depending on where they work. Nurses’ job responsibilities may also include routine laboratory work, office work, assistance in minor surgery and keeping records.
Having a career in healthcare can be very rewarding. The first step to this profession is getting proper education.
The United States is home to some of the best nursing schools in the world. These institutions provide a great platform for individuals to pursue a career as a nurse.
Though a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing is required for career advancement and multiple job opportunities, a 2-year hospital or community college program is the basic requirement to acquire entry level job positions in nursing.
Candidates who aspire to become nurse practitioners or nurse anesthetists should obtain a Masters Degree in Nursing.
There are a number of community colleges that offer two-year Associate of Science Degree Programs, which help candidates kick start their career in the field of nursing. To acquire nursing license, students need to graduate from an approved nursing program and then sit for the national licensing examination in their state.
As previously stated, obtaining a Degree in Nursing often takes a minimum of two years. Accelerated programs in nursing are offered by many schools today. These programs allow students to earn a degree in a short time. This way anyone looking to work right away will be able to.
Not all schools offer accelerated programs. Those that do offer a shortened associate’s or a bachelor’s degree program. Some schools even offer both.
Another convenient solution most nursing schools are offering today are online programs in nursing. This allows students to work on their own time, right from their home. The upside to this is that it is cheaper and it allows one to work part time. Take note though that there is a hands-on experience portion of the program. This will have to be accomplished at a clinic and on campus more than likely.
Here are some things to consider when picking an online program for nursing:
Accreditation for online nursing programs is important. Online programs and schools will indicate on their site if they are accredited. Either way you need to make sure that you enroll in a program that is accredited. You will only be eligible to take the NCLEX after you have completed an accredited nursing program.
To help you choose amongst the different nursing schools you will have to decide on what degree to take. Some schools only offer certain degree programs. This is why knowing what degree you want will help you choose a suitable school. Nursing degree programs available include:
An associate’s degree program takes two years to complete. This degree will allow you to apply for entry-level nursing positions. A bachelor’s degree takes four years to complete just like other undergraduate programs. A master’s degree takes an additional two years after completion of a BSN.
Picking a degree will depend on your resources. You need to assess your budget for your education and the time you have. If you only have the time and money to obtain an ADN for the moment then go for it. If you choose to, you can go back to school eventually and obtain a higher degree.
As mentioned previously there are accelerated programs. These will allow you to speed up the process of obtaining a degree. At the same time there are also bridge programs. This means that if you have are an RN or an ADN, you can continue your education by earning a BSN or MSN.
Associates degree programs in nursing often get the highest number of applicants. This degree is enough for an individual to practice as a nurse. Many opt for this degree since it only takes two years to complete. Also the expense is much less and graduates are able to apply for nursing jobs in just a short while.
Each school has a different set of guidelines regarding financial aid. In general financial aid is available in most schools. This will help you pay for your nursing education, which you can pay back when you are more financially stable. In the United States one of the best options to consider is federal aid. Simply find out if you are eligible.
Depending on what state you live in, you will discover that there are a vast number of nursing schools available. Check the ones in your area and determine which ones offer degree programs that are most suitable for you. A career in nursing is definitely a wise choice. You will gain great personal
If you’re working as as home health nurse or public health nurse, you would need to travel to patients homes and community centers among others. Hospital nurses would often work during weekends, on holidays and during nights, as hospitals and nursing facilities provide patient care round the clock. Occupational health nurses usually work standard business hours.
Registered nurses employment growth rate is looking quite good. According to the Wall Street Journal, nurses are in demand again in 2016 due to a retirement wave and regional shortages. This is good news since the shortage is driving up salaries and sign-on bonuses. So good news for recent graduates.
Nurses with advance education can avail of even greater job and career opportunities.
Registered nurses can earn an annual salary ranging between $47,120 and $102,990. As nurses grow in experience and skill, they can also choose to specialize in a specific field and earn a higher salary. Nurses carrying experience of eight years or more earn a median annual salary of around $68,450.
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Right above CNAs are the licensed practical nurses (LPNs). Unlike nurse’s aides who are allowed to carry out administrative tasks including basic patient informal assessments, LPNs are specially trained nurses who many would agree have almost identical responsibilities to that of a registered nurse (RN).
The training however is much easier and quicker to complete than an RN. The basic standard for licensed practical nurse is that they must have obtained training and career certificate in basic nursing. The program should take around 12 months to complete, and it must be accredited by authorities, in order for the certificate holder to qualify for the licensure examination.
It should be noted that being an LPN is a very lucrative profession, with projected job growth of about 24% between 2014 and 2024. According to the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, the median salary of licensed practical nurses as at the year 2015 is $43,170.
As a licensed practical nurse, you will be trained to provide the most basic treatment and care to patients in diverse health care settings. This means you will be expected to maintain and monitor the health of patients assigned to you, and also perform other duties such as wound care, give shots, assistance in personal hygiene, draw blood, give medicine and update the chart records of your patients.
In addition these health professionals assist the RN supervise and manage the certified nursing assistants.
In order to become an LPN, you must have completed a diploma course that lasts for about 1 year and this program must include clinical rotations. The completion of this National exam is the most important standard for obtaining a license.
There is incredible similarity in duties performed between an RN and an LPN. Without a doubt, RN’s have more training under their belt and are more skilled but LPNs are equal in providing similar effort and ultimate care for patients in need. Reporting to an RN about changes in a patient condition, perform CPRs, keep records and medical histories performing patient assessments, taking blood samples and vital signs, as well as assisting with a patient’s overall personal hygiene and daily needs.
The required basic education to become an LPN is; Diploma in Practical Nursing. In some areas, certificate courses may be available, however, you will still require the diploma certification in most states of the country. On the completion of the diploma certificate, you will be required to pass the NCLEX-PN, which is an acronym for National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses.
The main prerequisites to enroll for LPN diploma course is; a high school diploma of a minimum GPA of 2.0 or a GED certificate. You must have passed English Grammar course, Reading, Mathematics and Science. You may also be asked to provide a proof of citizenship, and if English is not your primary or first language, you will be expected to provide an official test results of Test of English as Foreign Language (TOEFL). You may take the TOEFL test on computer or paper, and it must not be later than 2 years until the period of registering for the LPN course.
The LPN training program is available in several technical schools as well as hospitals and community colleges. The curricula for this program will normally include lots of practical experience, especially in clinical settings. You are also expected to take courses in the following subjects;
Though, getting a degree after your diploma is not compulsory, however, your career can speed up when you enroll for a degree program in Practical nursing (LPN), after your diploma and licensure. Most students often prefer to go straight into nursing practices, immediately after their licensure.
At the end of the 12 month training for Licensed Practical Nurse, an aspiring LPN is mandated to register for the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). The NCLEX-PN licensure examination is administered by the National Council of State Boards for Nursing. This is an adaptive examination that tests every components of the thought courses during the diploma program.
The examination will require that you make a payment of $200 at the point of registration, or you can register online via the National Council of State Boards for Nursing – www.ncsbn.org. The National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN), comprises of practical and written examination parts. On passing this exam, you will receive the LPN Licensure and you will be eligible to practice the nursing profession in any hospital, and in any state of the country.
As a licensed practical nurse, you can apply your skills in patient care, in broad range of health care fields. Licensed practical nurses are employed in government hospitals, clinics, as well as private doctor offices, hospice facilities, nursing homes and health care organizations. Most licensed practical nurses work on average of 40 hours a week, including shifts (those who work on night and weekend shifts are entitled to more benefits than those who work on regular day shifts).
Some licensed practical nurses work part time, when they further their education and training. While most nurses prefer to work on one facility, others divide their work hours between multiple locations. There are licensed practical nurses who travel country-wide, working for different hospitals and health care facilities for few month at a time- these nurses are usually hired on contractual basis.
As a Licensed Practical Nurse you would be eligible for advanced placement the higher degree program required to become an RN which is the Associate of Applied Science in Nursing program. It takes around 12 months to complete an LPN program whereas Registered Nursing Programs take between 18-36 months to complete.
The exact amount of time it takes is dependent on the choice of degree whether it is a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing), an ADN (Associate Degree in Nursing), or a diploma from an accredited nursing program.
The BSN is the preferred choice of RN program by employers and takes 4 years to complete. Nevertheless many candidates who choose the shorter timeframe and completes the ADN or diploma which takes 2-3 years will also be able to secure employment upon graduation.
The unfortunate truth is that most of the CNA programs carry no credit towards the Practical Nursing program. What this means, is that certified nursing assistants are on the same starting level as someone with no nursing experience. Although LPN programs don’t require CNA experience as a pre-requisite they do consider it valuable and often ask.
What some aspiring nursing students also choose to do is to work as a CNA to gain experience while waiting to get into a BSN program and make a direct route to RN.
Many individuals benefit from being a CNA first plus the money comes in handy for the tuition and your daily expenses. But since an LPN takes significantly less time to complete than RN many choose the ADN route first. Your goal is to ensure you choose a school with a good reputation and NCLEX pass rate.
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For those who wish to enter the field of healthcare, becoming a CNA is the first step toward achieving that goal since it offers valuable experience and can help further education to those who aspire to move onto becoming an LPN or an RN.
Admittedly being a CNA is a demanding role, it also offers flexible hours along with good benefits. And for individuals who enjoy caring for other people, it can be a very rewarding job.
Free nursing assistant programs are offered to individuals who lack financial resources including single parents. There are a number of places that offer free CNA training. Various local hospitals in different states and cities give out scholarship grants to deserving students.
These can even include licensure examinations in case you come to an understanding with the institution that decides to subsidize your schooling. It is a win-win situation for both parties since the hospital gets an employee while you benefit from sponsored education.
Here are the main six ways to seek out if there is free CNA training available in your state.
Long term care facilities including hospitals may offer free CNA training which can last from 3 months to a year in exchange for individuals working for them for free during the training period.
The only expense these nursing aide students will encounter is the cost of taking the certification examination. Capable students will undergo 120 hours of free classroom instruction and clinical setting. You can also expect homework and hands-on training with patients.
Alternatively, these facilities may agree to offer free training if you sign a contract to work for them for a stipulated period of time. In this instance the certified nursing assistant is obligated to work for a specific period equivalent to one calendar year as a contract prerequisite for not paying any tuition fees. The employee may be required to repay part or the full cost of the course for failure to honor this obligation. So take your time and carefully think your decision.
Research online by getting a list of hospital and nursing homes in your area using SIC Codes 8051, 8052, 8059, and NAIC Codes 62311 and 623312 to search for nursing homes and continued care residences and call or email them inquiring if they offer free CNA training or CNA training in exchange for possible future employment opportunities.
In addition you may also find these facilities may sometimes advertise these courses on the Internet via their website, online resources such as Indeed.com or Monster.com and print publications. Applicants must be at least 18 years old, without any criminal record, possess a high school diploma or have passed the GED successfully, and have fundamental skills in English and mathematics.
Below is a quick script to help you get started, it would help if you can locate the name of the person in charge of the hiring process either in HR or the head nurse. Basically you want to have the name and email/telephone of the those responsible for making the hiring decision.
Dear Ms./Mr. (Surname) / To Whom It May Concern:
My name is (First Name, Second Name) and I would like to inquire about any current or future free CNA training opportunities in your medical facility. Alternatively, I would be equally happy to work for your establishment in exchange for attaining the CNA training required to sit the CNA licensure examination.
I am very passionate about progressing into the medical field and becoming a CNA is my top priority. I am available for an immediate start. I would be happy to meet at your very earliest and discuss how I can be a valued member of your team while I undergo the required CNA training.
(You may choose to tell one or two sentences about yourself - Your most recent employment, any educational achievements and training skills.)
I look forward to your feedback and the opportunity to further enhance my education.
CNA training is offered at no charge at the U.S. Job Corps to eligible students. Individuals commit for 8-12 months required to complete the Nurse Assistant training. Cadets receive free room, meals and basic medical care in addition to a bi-weekly living allowance. Contact them and sign up for their next available intake.
Each state has a QIO and are responsible for working with health care providers including nursing homes in each assigned state. Ask to speak with program manager or senior leader to seek out which nursing homes in your state offer free training for aspiring CNAs. Start your research by contacting the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid to learn about your state's QIO.
Another useful resource of locating nursing homes that offer free training to CNAs is through your states’ Department of Health. Each state has a CNA licensing office run by the Department of Public Health. Simply contact the head of the CNA License Office to see if they have a list of available nursing homes that offer free training your area. In addition enquire about any available scholarships for funding free CNA classes online or at a private training facility for low income individuals.
Check with your state’s Department of Labor about nursing facilities that offer paid CNA training. Their mission is to provide services enabling employers and job seekers to make informed decisions. Contact the manager of the office closest to you and ask what resources they have for training and employment for you to explore as an aspiring CNA including nursing homes that offer to train CNA’s for free.
Many states offer the Displaced Homemakers Program which helps stay-at-home parents and homemakers receive training and become employable. There are certain eligibility requirements which varies from each state and not all states offer the Displaced Homemaker program. A quick search online will help locate the Displaced Homemaker program in your state and enquire about your eligility to receive assistance to pay for your certified nursing assistant training. They can also help with childcare, work clothing, transportation and other job-incurred costs.
While there is no shortage for low-cost or free training for nursing assistants you really do have to research sift through various sources until you locate a free program that will help you realize your goal to becoming a nursing assistant. Don’t give up!
CNA jobs are among the ideal entry-level positions in the medical industry since the barriers to entry are so low and the training period is less than a year. The Department of Health and Human Services forecasts that demand for the position is projected to go up by over 40% within the next decade. New certified nursing assistants can hope to earn between $10 and $16 per hour. These healthcare experts are not registered nurses.
Nonetheless, these individuals are on the medical frontline carrying out fundamental medical care. These include personal hygiene and monitoring body functions such as temperature and heart beats. Many nurse aides begin careers at this point with the intention of becoming an LPN or RN in the future, and certified nursing assistant classes are the starting point. The certified nursing assistant can pursue advanced studies that will lead to a degree in nursing.
We will continue to update this page as new information becomes available.
What has been your experience with finding free training nursing assistant programs in your state? If you would like to share your tips or experiences with our readers we welcome your opinion.
Compression socks are a must for your overnight nurse bag. But wearing compression socks that don’t fit can be a daily nightmare. Finding the right compression socks may prove to be a challenge since everyone is unique and what may work for one individual may not work just as well for the next. Nursing is a tough job, but a rewarding one for that. On top of supporting physicians and helping patients, nursing requires a lot of physical stamina and moving around. The result of all this movement and standing is pain in the feet and legs, along with the potential for varicose veins down the line.
We’ve researched the top rated compression socks and have come up with 5 recommendations for you to check out.
For nurses and just about anyone in a work environment that leads to long hours on their feet can benefit from wearing compression socks. They help improve leg circulation and support the venous system and help prevent unsightly varicose veins. This allows nurses to work long shifts with less pain and discomfort. This solution is often prescribed by doctors and is great because it is all natural and very easy to follow. All you need to do is put on the socks when you wake up and take them off at night!
Doctors have used compression since the 1950’s to treat swelling, edema and promote healing. If you’ve ever been in the hospital and worn those tight white stockings - you’ve worn compression.
However, the compression in the products we recommend varies significantly from those white stockings. When you’re active and working for 10-12 long hour shifts there is a significant increase in pressure build up in your legs which can hinder circulation. For this reason you need a higher level of compression than the hospital stockings. If you go to any pharmacy you’ll see they carry different compression products in different compression levels. Most of these are not designed for individuals that stay on their feet for long hours but rather an older patient simply needing light support. As a working medical professional you need targeted graduated compression.
The benefits of using compression sock are numerous but for nurses in particular they are key in helping with:
Compression socks benefits individuals that suffer from:
Compression socks can help treat little things like leg discomfort to bigger issues like swelling in the legs. This is done by putting pressure on the legs to increasing the flow of blood to the area and reducing swelling. Compression socks can also help prevent blood clots in the legs and help prevent leg and foot injuries.
These types of socks not only come in different sizes and colours but also in various compression strengths, depending on the severity of the problem. The more pain or swelling that is happening, generally the higher the compression needed.
Nurses should wear their compression socks during their shift and take them off when they get home or before bed at night. Most compression socks are safe to wear on a daily basis as part of a long-term solution.
Here's a quick and great video (little over a minute) on how to put on compression socks. Worth a watch!
When buying compression socks as a nurse, there are a few things that you should keep in mind. For example, it might be possible that these socks are covered by your health insurance or prescription plan. Below are the characteristics of a good compression sock:
Compression socks come in various levels of compression, sizes, and colours. For them to be an effective treatment, nurses need to consider the different features of these socks and what will work best for their needs.
For ease and effectiveness knee length works the best since they are more comfortable, less expensive and just as effective as high compression stockings.
Another thing to keep in mind is that compression socks are not a one size fits all. It is recommended that you go to a specialized store that will measure your leg to make sure that you get the right fit. Compression socks should feel tight on your leg but not to the point where they are restricting or painful.
The best nursing compression socks are the ones that are well fitted. A 20-30 mmHg or 30-40 mmHg are OK if you can tolerate and feel comfortable all day for individuals that have varicose veins or have a family history of vein problems.
If you have no varicosities or just small spider veins best to start with 15-20 mm. of compression. As time progresses and if there are changes, you may want to go further and increase the compression to 20-30 mm. Compression stock are a good idea not only to slow down the progression (it won't prevent) of spider veins, but also so your legs won't be so tired after work.
If you have larger calves you may want to start with a lower compression sock to get over your calf muscle without the tight band at the top. Some socks have a gradient compression, which may be more useful for medical conditions.
For others uniform compression is better.
By their very nature, compression socks are very tight and seams can give cause to blisters. So it's probably best to avoid socks with seams since they can cause irritation.
Nursing compression socks do not withstand washing machines and should instead be washed by hand in a mild detergent for example washing up liquid. Hang or lay flat to air-dry but don’t put them in the tumble dry or on a hot radiator since they will shrink.
The benefits of wearing compression socks are without a doubt numerous. So how much do they cost? They’re not inexpensive; a pair can cost you anywhere from $15 to $60. We've researched the best pair of compression socks to suit any budget. Check our recommendations below.
Sockwell’s compression socks are ideal for people who stand for long periods of time and are safe to wear all day on a regular basis. These socks are made using a high performance material that controls odor, heat, and moisture so that the wearer’s legs and feet are comfortable all day. They also offer arch support and a Toe and Heel Box that helps keep the socks in place.
All the features of Sockwell’s compression socks makes them a great choice for nurses suffering from leg problems caused by their active work environment. These socks come in 13 different colours and two size options: S/M and M/L.
Feedback from customers on the performance of Sockwell compression socks is mostly positive. Nurses who work long shifts claim that these socks are great because they stay up and support their arches. Many satisfied users claim that these socks have a good level of compression that is not painful as opposed to other brands they have tried.
Nurses and other professionals love these compression socks due to the mix of the right amount of compression, ultra-light cushion sole and ergonomic anti-fatigue design it has. These are a top contender for the best compression socks for nurses and continue to receive great reviews.
Another great choice for nurses is Dr. Motion compression socks. Known for their fashionable style, these comfortable socks are designed for everyday wear to prevent fatigue and swelling.Dr. Motion socks are available in sizes 4-10 and comes in a pack of four pairs in some amazing patterns from classic stripes, polka dots and argyle patterns.
These compression socks offer medium support, are comfortable for an all-day wear or long shifts and helps reduce swelling and pain in legs and feet. Socks are easy to put on and stay up better than other compression socks thanks to the support of an upper band.
These socks are made to last while being both comfortable and effective. Dr. Motion compression socks will make a great addition to your nurse’s toolkit, especially if you are having problems with tired and aching legs and fee and want to prevent the onset or spread of spider veins and varicose veins.
Vitalsox compression socks are proudly made using the only patented compression technique that can help improved damaged tissues 40% faster. These compression socks are made for all types of physical activity, including nurses who stand and walk throughout most of their long shifts.
Vitalsox has been in the business since 1998, perfecting their compression socks to be as effective and comfortable as possible. Customers note that these compression socks are of high value, are easy to put on, and are comfortable. Plus, they are made using environmentally-friendly fibres too!
These socks are a little more affordable than other compression socks available on the market. They are also noted to be quite durable and able to maintain their compression over a decent period of time. An often commented benefit by nurses and athletes who wore them is they noticed that their legs feel great after wearing these socks all day.
Nurse Mates offers one-size fits all compression stockings in more than 30 different colors and stylish designs. Customers love the fit of these socks, sharing that they fit even on people with larger calves. They also provide a good level of compression that is effective but not uncomfortably tight.
Shift workers like nurses love Nurse Mates socks because they help relieve leg and foot discomfort after a long day on their feet. These socks are also effective in reducing swelling, soft, and don’t fall during the day.
The customer feedback is full of raving comments and many medical professionals are satisfied with these compression socks compared to others that they tried. No more swollen, uncomfortable feet for you again.
A-Swift socks are made for both women and men. They come in three different sizes with around 25 different styles to choose from! These compression socks come below the knee and have comfort padding that help prevent foot injuries and stress.
Nurses who work long shifts will find that A-Swift compression socks do a good job in helping relieve swelling and discomfort in the feet and legs. Most customers who have tried these socks are very happy with the quality and comfort.
A couple of negative reviews have shared that these socks may be tight for people with larger calves. While that might be the case, some factors like how you put on the compression socks can help solve this problem.
Since these were designed for use by athletes, they work particularly well for nurses as well, since they get the job done and do it the right way the first time around.
For nurses who work long shifts with very little time to sit, coming home after a long day can be a relief. The only problem is that the pain that builds up in the legs and feet during these rough days does not end when a nurse gets home. The pain often continues and builds up, which can lead to even more discomfort and circulation issues.
Compression stockings are a great, natural solution to this problem. By wearing these special socks each day, nurses can relieve a lot of the swelling and discomfort that they suffer from on a day-to-day basis. There are many different types of compression socks available, depending on the level of compression needed and style preferences.
To get the right compression socks for you, it is best to know your leg measurements and carefully pick out the right size. For proper care, most compression socks should not be machine washed but rather washed by hand and allowed to air dry.
So, you want to become a Certified Nursing Assistant. You have completed the training program and you feel like you’re ready to start your new career. There’s only one more hurdle you need to overcome: the CNA Licensing Exam. The mammoth standing in between you and your dream.
The CNA Licensing Exam, or National Nurse Aid Assessment Program, is used to measure the competency of future practitioners in the United States. Training to become a CNA can vary in each state.
The US alone employs more than 1.4 million nursing assistants, per 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics. The BLS also states that certified nursing assistants earn a mean hourly wage of $13.29/hour and a mean annual wage of $27,650.
Certified nursing assistants are in high demand. Graduates have the chance to enter a fulfilling field where they get to use their natural skills to help patients and other healthcare professionals.
Regardless of how prepared you were, there is a small chance that you may fail the CNA licensing exam. Maybe you already did. Maybe your nerves got the best of you or you didn’t study hard enough. Maybe you slept terribly the night before.
If you failed one or both parts of the CNA exam, now is not the time to panic. You still have several opportunities to make a comeback. Take a deep breath and decide to do better the next time around. If you recently failed your CNA Licensing Exam and you’re wondering what to do next, follow these six steps:
The CNA Licensing Exam consists of two parts: a written and a skills test. Be prepared by knowing exactly what each section will ask of you and do your best to be ready for anything.
Use the resources that are available to you; practice tests are available online and at most training facilities. Train yourself to remember small but important details like washing your hands.
When preparing to retake your CNA licensing exam, remember to space out your studies and avoid cramming at the last minute. Study hard and practice your skills on fellow classmates, friends, and family until you have the important steps committed to memory.
Take note of what parts of the CNA exam gave you a hard time. Were there concepts in the written section that you were stumped on? Or did you forget a key step in the skills portion of the test?
Focus on the parts that gave you trouble during your studies and make sure those same sections don’t give you a hard time the second time around.
To complete your CNA licensing, you need to pass both sections of the test. Luckily, if you passed one section and failed the other you only need to retake the section that you failed. If you failed both sections, you can retake both.
Focus your efforts on passing the section that you failed. Don’t waste your time studying the part that you got right.
Some people just aren’t great at test-taking, no matter how hard they. That’s okay. All you need to do is remember these key steps during your testing and you will get through it as painlessly as possible:
After receiving your training, it is important to remember that you only have two years to pass the exam before you need to go through training again. Mark the date on a calendar and make sure you retake the test before that date. Students have three tries at the CNA Licensing Exam before they are required to go through training again.
Congratulations on putting in the hard work and effort to get to the CNA Licensing Exam and jumpstart your career as a Certified Nursing Assistant. Failing all or part of the exam can be disheartening. Just remember that one failure does not mean the end - you still have several opportunities to pass the test.
Keep in mind that test-taking skills do not necessarily reflect how you will do in the field. If you recently failed one or both parts of your CNA Licensing Exam, just follow the steps outlined above and do better next time!
If you have made the decision to become a nursing assistant, there are a great deal of approved certified nurse aide (CNA) training programs in Indiana that you can choose from to help you train.
The Indiana State Department of Health requires all trainees to complete a RI state approved CNA training program, successfully pass the nurse aide competency written and oral evaluation skills exam and apply for Certification of Registration as a Nursing Assistant on the Indiana Nurse Aide Registry.
Here is a list of approved CNA classes in Indiana complete with addresses and phone numbers for your convenience.
If you have made the decision to become a nursing assistant, there are several certified nursing assistant programs in Rhode Island that you can choose from to help you train.
Often classes can be taken during the day, weekends, and evenings. These courses vary from 3, 5, or 8 weeks depending on which program you choose to take. You might want to keep working at your current position and then take the course strictly on the weekends or you may want to compress the training and take it full time every day if you have no other conflicting obligations.
During training you will learn not only basic nursing skills but also about nutrition, physical fitness, confidence building skills, and how to provide that ever important bedside manner. You will need to review the skills along the way before you are required to sit your exam.
Prior to registration you have to have certain requirements met including providing a criminal reference check, and be able to read, write, and speak English. For other exact requirements it is best to check with the school that you wish to attend so we have provided a list for you to contact.
Nursing assistants often use these training programs as a stepping stone to becoming an LPN or RN.
The Rhode Island Department of Health mandates that a nursing assistance training program is state approved and be completed in no less than 90 days. A competency exam is also required and can taken upon successful completion of a training program. This Rhode Island State Nurse Assistant Exam is generally conducted at the center where you obtained your training. Bear in mind there might be additional fee to sit the exam ($55) along with a $40 registration fee unless these costs have already been included in the course.
Once your training is completed and certification exam is passed you should apply for a Certification of Registration as a Nursing Assistant from the Rhode Island Nurse Assistant Registry. This completes the registration process and allows you now to seek employment as a Licensed CNA and start working.
Here is a list of approved CNA classes in Rhode Island complete with addresses and phone numbers for your convenience.
CNA Classes database last updated: June 11, 2017