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What Does a Certified Nursing Assistant Do?

If you’re looking for a fulfilling job that makes a difference, then consider becoming a certified nursing assistant (CNA). Frequently referred to as nurses aides, they provide hands-on healthcare to patients in hospitals, nursing homes and other medical settings. Their responsibilities often vary from recording vital signs to helping bathe and dress patients. At long-term care facilities, they often assist residents with the activities of daily living.

They generally work as part of a health care team that helps patient reach their highest level of functioning and independence.

Certified nursing assistants often see people at their most vulnerable, so being kind while providing dignity to the patient is crucial. CNAs ensure the safety of patients and provide emotional, psychological and even spiritual support.

Night, weekend and holiday work is often required.

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$ 21,000 - $ 41,000
$ 30,000
163,360+
Certified nursing assistants provide hands-on care to patients
Openings for nursing assistants are expected to grow faster than the average job as baby boomers age. (Credit: Photographee.eu/Shutterstock)
A Day In the Life
Image
Johndarius Akins, certified nursing assistant ambassador
A Day In the Life

As a child, Johndarius Akins dreamed of becoming a pediatrician.

“I knew that I wanted to be a part of the medical field so that I could help people who were in need physically, mentally or emotionally,” says the 31-year-old certified nursing assistant. “It brings me a sense of joy to lend a helping hand, have a listening ear and to provide the utmost care to others.” Learn more of his story.

Job Responsibilities
  • Clean and bathe patients while providing privacy and dignity
  • Help patients get dressed
  • Turn, reposition to avoid bed sores
  • Transfer patients between beds and wheelchairs and help them maintain or increase their ability to walk
  • Observe, listen to and document patients’ health concerns or changes in condition and report that information to nurses
  • Measure patients’ vital signs, such as blood pressure and temperature
  • Serve meals and help patients eat
  • Follow infection control procedures 
  • Help maintain a clean and organized environment
Education + Training

Nursing assistants often need to complete a state-approved education program that includes both instruction on the principles of nursing and supervised clinical work. These programs are available in high schools, community colleges, technical schools, hospitals and nursing homes.

In addition, nursing assistants typically complete a brief period of on-the-job training to learn about their specific employer’s policies and procedures. Rules vary by state, but most students must pass a state certification exam and get listed on their state's CNA registry. CNA certification typically lasts two years.

You May Be a Good Fit for This Position If You
  • Have excellent communication skills
  • Are compassionate to those in need
  • Have the patience and physical stamina to perform routine tasks
  • Have a good understanding of medical technology
  • Are a good problem-solver
  • Have the ability to adapt and improvise

Certified Nursing Assistant Training in Your Area

Coordinates

Home Health Aide Certificate

Neosho County Community College
Chanute (42.2 Miles)

Nursing Assistant Certificate

Neosho County Community College
Chanute (42.2 Miles)

Certified Nurse Aide

Allen Community College
Iola (61.1 Miles)

Certified Nurse Aide Certificate

Wichita State University Tech WSU Tech
Wichita (94.8 Miles)

Nursing Assistant Certificate

NorthWest Arkansas Community College
Bentonville (99.2 Miles)

Certified Nurse Aide Certificate

Johnson County Community College
Overland Park (137.5 Miles)

Certified Nurse Aide, A.A.S.

Manhattan Area Technical College
Manhattan (153.6 Miles)

Nurse Aide Certificate

Pratt Community College
Pratt (169.3 Miles)

Skills Certificate in Nurse Aide

State Fair Community College
Sedalia (173.4 Miles)

Professional Certificate in Nurse Aide

State Fair Community College
Sedalia (173.4 Miles)

Associate of Applied Science in Health Care Specialist with Emphasis in Nurse Aide

State Fair Community College
Sedalia (173.4 Miles)

Nurse Aide Non-Credit Certificate

Paris Junior College
Paris (238.0 Miles)

Find Certified Nursing Assistant Jobs in Your Area

Coordinates

Nurse Assistant I

McLaren Health Care
Lansing ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 6 months ago

Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA)

Addus HomeCare Corporation
Belmont ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 7 months 2 weeks ago

Personal Care Attendant (PCA) - Adult Residential

William Backus Hospital
Stratford ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 5 months 4 weeks ago

State Tested Nursing Assistant - STNA

Saber Healthcare Group, LLC
Grand Rapids ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 5 months 2 weeks ago

Patient Care Tech - Float Pool

HCA
Wichita ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 5 months 2 weeks ago

Registered Med Techs - FT/PT

Tarantino Properties
Lake Forest Park ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 9 months ago

Patient Attendant - Float Staffing

AMITA Health
Wichita ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 6 months ago

Hospitality Aide

Signature Healthcare
Beattyville ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 5 months 3 weeks ago