Nursing assistant

Medicine and Health care
Nursing Assistant Course , How To Become An Nursing Assistant - TheCareerHub
  • Growth
  • Salary
    RS 18000-40000

Who is Nursing assistant?

Nursing Assistants, at times called Nursing Aides, Patient Care Assistant (PCA), or Certified Nursing Assistants (CNS), assist in providing basic, intimate, hands-on patient healthcare in hospitals and long-term care residency facilities, such as nursing homes, under the supervision of Registered Nurse (RN) or Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN).  Depending on their degree of training and the state in which they work, some nursing assistants may also be able to distribute medication. Nursing assistants are frequently the primary caregivers in nursing homes and residential care institutions. They have more contact with residents than other members of the staff. Because some residents stay in a nursing home for months or years, nursing assistants tend to build strong bonds with their patients.

Typical day at work

What does Nursing assistant do?

Nursing assistants, often known as nursing aides or CNAs (Certified Nursing Assistants), help patients with everyday activities. They work in hospitals and long-term care facilities including nursing homes, assisted living communities, and home care. . Helping patients with personal hygiene and eating, moving immobile patients, and collecting vital signs are some of their tasks. Registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs) supervise nursing assistants (LPNs). They assist patients with basic duties such as eating, bathing, dressing, and exercising in addition to caring for the requirements of many patients. Among their responsibilities include observing and recording patient conditions and vital signs, as well as monitoring patient food and beverage consumption.

  • To assess patient needs, respond to patient call signals, signal lights, bells or intercom systems
  • Provide physical assistance to help patients with their everyday life, such as getting out of bed, washing, dressing, using the toilet, standing, walking or exercising
  • Check dietary limitations, food allergies, and preferences of patients to confirm that they obtain sufficient diets
  • Measure and monitor food and liquid intake or urinary and faecal production, report to medical or nursing staff on changes
  • Monitor vital signs as directed by medical or nursing staff, such as temperature, blood pressure, pulse or respiration rate
  • Collect information from caregivers, nurses or doctors on the status of patients, recovery plans, or related activities
  • Monitor or examine patients for signs that can need medical attention, such as bruises, open wounds or blood in urine
  • Record and inform senior nurses of patient’s behaviour, grievances, or physical symptoms
  • Prompt patients for medications or nutritional supplements
  • Feeding or assisting patients with eating and drinking
  • Give, collect, or refill bedpans
  • Undress, shower, and dress up patients who cannot do anything for themselves
  • Lift or support in moving patients to or from beds, examination tables, operating tables, or stretchers
  • Talk to patients to assess their thoughts or desires for assistance or social and emotional support
  • Arrange or serve food plates
  • Clean and disinfect patient rooms, washrooms, examination rooms, etc.
  • Monitor patient’s height and weight
  • Collect urine, faecal, or sputum specimens
  • Under the guidance of a nurse or physician, put on clean dressings, slings, stockings or bandages on patients
  • Make beds and change bed sheets
  • Restock patient rooms with personal care products and toiletries like, soap, toilet paper, towels, napkins, etc.
  • Help exercise comatose, restricted mobility, and paralyzed patients
  • To prepare patients for surgery, examination, or treatment, shower, brush, shave, or drape them
  • Assist nurses or doctors in the use of medical devices or in the provision of patient care
  • Administer drugs or procedures as instructed by a physician or nurse, such as catheterizations, suppositories, irrigations, enemas, massages or douches
  • Position patients or keep them in position for surgical preparation
  • Using wheelchairs, stretchers or mobile beds, transport patients to treatment units, test units, operating rooms or other areas
  • Provide visitors or callers with information such as directions, visiting hours or information regarding patient status
  • Transport of specimens, laboratory products, or pharmacy products to the relevant staff with proper documentation and delivery
  • Establish treatment or testing facilities, such as oxygen tents, portable X-ray equipment, or overhead irrigation bottles, as guided by a doctor or nurse
  • Tell patients or family members about medical instructions
  • Monitor patients’ vital signs like blood pressure, pulse rate, oxygen saturation rate, and temperature
  • Store or issue medical items, such as packages of dressing or treatment trays.
Abilities & aptitude needed

What are the skills, abilities & aptitude needed to become Nursing assistant?

  • Nursing Assistant must be able to listen and communicate actively and attentively to the needs of the patients. They need to ask the right questions to interpret the information. They also regularly interact with other professionals and administrative staff. Thus, having good communication, in written and verbal as well as interpersonal skills is necessary.
  • They must be sensitive, calm, polite, patient, and empathic to patients’ needs and concerns. They need to make their patients feel comfortable and let them know they care, which requires them to have emotional intelligence.
  • To work with patient symptoms, they require analytical thought, problem-solving, judgement, and decision-making skills to determine the best course of action. They must show dedication, eye for detail, determination, persistence to commit to years of intense practice. They need to be efficient at team and time management as well as leadership and multitasking skills in order to care for various patients with different needs at the same time. They need to be highly organised, responsible, flexible, and observant.
  • They work with very sharp tools like syringes, thus they need to have manual dexterity as mistakes can have serious consequences. They must have self-discipline, spatial orientation, physical stamina, and physical dexterity as they spend a lot of time on their feet.


Which course I can pursue?

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Career Outlook

What does the future look like for Nursing assistant?

Nursing assistants can find a full-time job in Government and private hospitals, community health care centres, or clinics. They work in a particular medical department in the hospital. Their shifts usually alternate between day and night in the hospital, thus, their working hours may be irregular, at times, and overtime or urgent posting is required in case of emergencies. In nursing homes and residential care facilities, they are primary caregivers, and usually have a close relationship with their patients as residents may stay in a nursing home for months or years. One can also choose to work in a rehabilitation facility or assisted living facility, and even specific patient populations- geriatric, children, and others. Nursing Assistants may move on to become licensed practical nurses (LPNs), registered nurses (RNs), or healthcare specialists.

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