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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

Nursing Assistant Certificate

Neosho County Community College
Chanute (42.2 Miles)

Home Health Aide Certificate

Neosho County Community College
Chanute (42.2 Miles)

Certified Nurse Aide

Allen Community College
Iola (61.1 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)
North Arkansas College logo

Nursing Assistant Certificate

North Arkansas College
Harrison (157.4 Miles)

Nurse Aide Certificate

Pratt Community College
Pratt (169.3 Miles)
University of Arkansas Community College - Morrilton logo

Nursing Assisting Certificate Of Proficiency

University of Arkansas Community College - Morrilton
Morrilton (212.8 Miles)
University of Arkansas Community College - Morrilton logo

Nursing Assistant Workforce Development

University of Arkansas Community College - Morrilton
Morrilton (212.8 Miles)
Grayson College logo

Certified Nurse Aide Non- Credit Certificate

Grayson College
Denison (239.5 Miles)

Certified Nurse Aide Certificate

Garden City Community College
Garden City (287.8 Miles)
Southern Arkansas University Tech logo

Nursing Assistant Certificate of Proficiency

Southern Arkansas University Tech
Camden (292.5 Miles)

Find Certified Nursing Assistant Jobs in Your Area

Coordinates

Personal Care Attendant (PCA) - Adult Residential

William Backus Hospital
Stratford ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 8 months 3 weeks ago

CNA Certified Nursing Assistant

Ascension Health
Wichita ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 8 months 2 weeks ago

Nurse Tech Academy Program

Cone Health
Greensboro ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 8 months 2 weeks ago

Med Aide/Tech - Certified - FULL TIME

Brookdale Senior Living
Gastonia ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 8 months 2 weeks ago

Resident Assistant II- The Terrace- Full Time Eve

Trinity Health Corporation
Troy ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 9 months 2 weeks ago

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)

Select Medical Corporation
Wichita ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 1 year ago

Patient Care Technician - Samaritan Hospital - Inpatient Geropsych - Per Diem Mixed shifts

Trinity Health Corporation
Troy ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 8 months ago

Nursing Tech I WLCH Emer Room

Cone Health
Greensboro ( 0.0 ) Miles
Posted 8 months 2 weeks ago