Optional Certified Nursing Assistant Training Courses

To work as a certified nursing assistant, you must undergo a state-accredited training program. While this program offers a vast array of learning units designed to enhance working knowledge of this unique field, enhancing your education through optional CNA training coursework does nothing but increase knowledge while simultaneously making yourself a more attractive option for prospective employers.

Continuing Education Qualified Coursework

After you’ve gained certification, all states require CNAs to continue their education through continuing education units, also known as CEUs. Every state features different CEU requirements; however, most states require a set number of hours to be completed per year to maintain certification.

While undergoing continuing education units is not an option, expanding your education beyond the minimum credit hour requirements is a common trait among the most successful certified nursing assistants. But what coursework should you embark on?

Specialty Training

If you’re interested in working in a more specialized healthcare clinic, such as a geriatric unit or pediatric hospital, then seek out specialty training coursework. Expanding your knowledge on less-common procedures and topics is attractive to employers and may help further your CNA career. Remember, it doesn’t matter if you’re currently working in a specialty field, only train under a state-approved training institution. This is especially important if you’re using training classes to satisfy CEU requirements.

Personal-Advancement Training

Outside of obtaining CEUs to maintain certification, CNAs must consider continuing their education on all levels. While you may feel your grasp on basic-level CNA knowledge is strong, further this strength by undergoing voluntary training coursework. Some of the most successful CNAs redo their basic-level training several times, even after they’ve been hired. Since you’ve already gained certification, consider applying for online coursework from an established digital learning center. These online libraries offer a myriad of specialized and generalized CNA training courses.

As a healthcare professional, your desire to learn should never diminish. Even after gaining certification, strive to become the best, which is only done through effective training programs.

Non-Medical Coursework

Although your life as a CNA requires a vast ocean of medical knowledge, you’re in a unique situation as you must also master interpersonal communication skills as well as clerical duties. Advance your ability to work in all aspects of a medical facility by taking non-medical related coursework. Suggested courses include:

1.) Accounting
2.) Communication Skills
3.) Management Courses
4.) Anger Management Coursework
5.) Organization and Time Management Coursework

The aforementioned topics are all job skills you must master, if not for your current CNA position, for future positions. Obtaining training outside of medical learning modules is attractive to employers as it shows your knowledge base and skill sets are far greater than the average CNA. See here if you would like to learn how to become a CNA

Top 5 Habits of Successful Certified Nursing Assistants

Certified nursing assistants are some of the most valuable, yet underrated, medical professionals in the healthcare field. While considered an entry-level position, the depth of knowledge and skill required is impressive and challenging. Although you must devote yourself fully to this career, the following five habits are commonly found among the most successful CNAs. Remember, with dedication and a desire to do your best work, you’ll quickly become a highly-skilled and respected certified nursing assistant.

Habit #5: Desire for Proactive Behavior

The most successful certified nursing assistants are those who seize every opportunity proactively tend to situations. These are professionals who use their professional training and personal resourcefulness to isolate solutions to problems rather than simply report an issue for someone else to deal with. Become a true asset to the nursing staff by being proactive with your daily tasks.

Habit #4: Strong Personal Work Ethic

While it’s expected that every certified nursing assistant carry a strong work ethic, the most successful are those who work according to their own personal work ethic, not the ethics taught during CNA training. Use your own set of morals and values to shape and mold how you operate during work. Strive to continually meet these goals while simultaneously adhering to policies and procedures set forth by your employer.

Habit #3: Desire to Work With Patients

Certified nursing assistants who try to do things according to their own method without listening to patient concerns or addressing issues will quickly find themselves in the unemployment line. Those successful in this career field are those who have an active desire to work with patients. Set a personal goal to actively work with patients to overcome any and all misunderstandings and conflicts.

Habit #2: Actual Listening, Not Just Hearing

Some of the most dissatisfied patients are those who dealt with CNAs who didn’t actually listen to them. When you’re dealing with multiple patients day-in and day-out it’s only natural to have moments of disregard. That being noted, you are a certified professional. Maintain your integrity and desire to truly help people in need by keeping your ears and minds open during conversation. Communication is the first line of defense against further progression of illnesses and negative/depressed mindsets.

Habit #1: Time Management

When you’re dealing with multiple patients who all require 100-percent of your attention, the idea of time management may seem a joke. While difficult at times, the most successful certified nursing assistants are those who understand how to set priorities and limit interactions based upon this priority list. Even though you may wish to sit and chit-chat with Mr. Smith about his cat back home, Mrs. Smith in the next room is in dire need of a bath and clean clothes. Maximize your communication with patients while actually tending to them. Once your duties are done, politely excuse yourself and move onto the next patient.

If you feel you fit these criteria, you can find CNA certification many different places including online!

This entry was posted on September 15, 2013, in About CNA's.

How to Avoid Being Charged With Battery/Assault as a CNA

Whenever you work in a certified or licensed profession, the legalities of such work are complex and multi-layered. While your CNA certification online likely covered several legal aspects of working as a CNA, the concept of battery and assault is one you must take very seriously. Due to the intimate nature of this career, you must understand what is classified as battery and/or assult to not only prevent this from happening personally, but to stop such instances from occurring in your entire work environment.

Definition of Battery

While there are many resources that go into greater detail regarding this subject matter, the basic definition of battery is when a CNA does not physically hurt a patient, but rather set forth a plan to hurt them. For example, you’re caught conversing with a co-worker about diluting patient medication as you don’t think they’re really sick.

Definition of Assault

When the plan for battery turns into actual action, the result is legally defined as assault. Moreover, assault is when bodily harm is actually done to a patient at your hands. For example, you are annoyed with a patient so instead of securing safety bars alongside a bed, you purposefully leave them unsecured, which may result in the patient falling out of bed.

Steps to Avoid Battery

While the obvious step to avoid assault is to never do anything that could cause harm to your patient, you must actively work to prevent being charged with battery. This is especially important when working with the mentally ill as they may fabricate asset stories. Prevent battery by:

1.) Clearly explaining to each patient what you’re about to do.
2.) Make the patient verbally acknowledge they understand what you plan to do.
3.) Allow the patient to ask questions or voice concerns before engaging in the forthcoming activity. Ask the patient, “Do you have any questions?” Allow the patient ample time to think and respond before moving forward.
4.) Never push a treatment or activity if the patient does not give 100-percent consent. When a patient refuses to accept treatment or an activity, inform your supervisor without making a scene. Your supervisor will know how to handle the situation.

The most important step to remember when dealing with patients is to only act according to informed consent. That is, only continue with a procedure or action plan after the patient clearly understands what is expected. By informing them, and allowing them time to agree, you’re creating a legal contract known as “informed consent.” Only continue when both the patient and yourself agree and informed consent is established.

Certified Nursing Assistant Tips – How to Deal With Impaired Patients

While you may have romantic ideas of working as a CNA, the truth is not every job or patient is ideal. This shouldn’t come as a surprise as many patients you’re dealing with, especially in hospital and nursing home settings, are injured, ill or recovering from an intense procedure. The complexity of this situation is heightened when dealing with an impaired patient. As a certified nursing assistant, you must follow state and employer regulations when dealing with physically or mentally impaired individuals.

Cognitively Impaired Patients

While this term covers a wide spectrum of patients and potential illnesses, basic communication skills are universal across all patients. When dealing with those who are cognitively impaired, you must understand their ability to communicate, or even process information, is vastly different than yours. Therefore, you must learn how to communicate through verbal and non-verbal cues. Whenever speaking with a patient who is cognitively impaired, break down information into easily digestible chunks. Use simplistic language, or stick to key phrases the patient understands. When in doubt, show the patient visual cues. Visual communication is oftentimes more effective as many cognitively impaired individuals are unable to communicate in a clear and concise verbal manner.

When speaking with the patient, maintain eye contact while keeping your body around their level. Do not hover over them or reach out and touch them unless you’re confident they will not review this touch as a threat or confusion. It’s all about how you speak to a patient rather that what you say. Therefore, keep your voice calm and smooth. Do not rush words or show your frustration.

Because those with cognitive impairments are typically unable to think clearly or logically, they can become confused, agitated and sometimes aggressive. This is especially true when dealing with patients who’ve been transported from their home into a facility.

Establish some sort of routine to your visits. Since those who are cognitively impaired are oftentimes unable to remember people or situations, entering the room and performing the same tasks at the same time every day may allow them to remember at least the purpose of your visit. When you must make changes to their daily routine, do so slowly. Never cause abrupt changes in their environment unless absolutely necessary. Lastly, when dealing with those who are impaired, it’s important to build a sense of consistency and trust. Stick to your word when you say you will do something or arrive at a specific time. Failure to maintain this constant level of trust and security may result in patient agitation and aggression.