Certified Nursing Assistants or CNAs are part of the fast growing healthcare sector. The demand for CNAs is high with a projected job growth of 20 percent over the next decade. The relatively easy entry into the field combined with faster than average job growth makes this field an attractive choice.
The Duties and Salary of a CNA
Nursing assistants take care of the basic needs of patients. They bathe them, serve meals, and do whatever menial work necessary to make the patients more comfortable. CNAs also take the blood pressure and temperature of patients and record this information for the doctors. Some CNAs may give patients medicine depending on their training and state regulations. Nursing assistants who work in nursing homes often fill the role of principal caregiver for the patients. The median annual wage for CNAs was $24,010 in 2010. The top 10 percent earned more than $34,580 while the bottom 10 percent earned less than $17,790.
Requirements to Become a CNA
Becoming a CNA requires the applicant to complete a training program to learn the basics of nursing and gain experience in clinical work. Following the program, the prospective CNA must pass a competency exam to earn their certification. Some states require additional measures such as a criminal background check. There are states where CNAs may begin working before completing all of the requirements so long as they complete them within a certain time period.
Schools With CNA Programs
1. Cuyahoga Community College offers a State Tested Nursing Assistants program that requires students be high school graduates or have a GED. The students must also be in good health. A TB test result of negative is necessary. Training for this 104 hour program includes clinical experience and practice testing for the state competency exam.
2. Med-Cert Training Center is an institution offering a 76 hour course designed to prepare students to take the state exam. A criminal background test and a TB test are required. This course offers CPR certification as part of the program.
3. The American Red Cross of Greater Cleveland offers a state approved Nursing Assistants program. This 120 hour course requires attendance at an orientation by students. A criminal background check and a TB check are standard. It is designed to prepare students to take the state competency exam.
4. Heart to Heart Healthcare Center has a 75 hour state approved STNA training program. The course includes 59 hours of classroom instruction plus 16 hours of clinical training. Applicants must pass a physical and background check. The TB test must also be negative.
There are many opportunities for job seekers to begin a career as a nursing assistant in Cleveland, Ohio.
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