Being a CNA at a Hospice

So, you want to work as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) at a hospice. A hospice is a medical institution that gives mental and emotional health-care services to terminally ill patients and their family members. If you are a CNA working there, you will be providing personalized medical and basic needs care for your patients under the guidance of a nurse or doctor.

Working At A Hospice

A CNA at a hospice takes vital statistics readings from their patients, such as taking their blood pressure or pulse. They also set up medical gear and help nurses put in IVs or other activities.

A hospice CNA provides also helps the patients with grooming tasks such as bathing, dressing, brushing their teeth or combing their hair or even feeding them if they can’t do it for themselves.

Some of the CNA’s other duties could include any or all of the following:

  • Help with changing the sheets and light housekeeping
  • Help with walking or changing positions
  • Help with taking medications, changing dressings, recording medical reading
  • Reports all changes in patient’s status
  • Prepares meals and snacks and shops for groceries
  • Makes reports to head nurse on patient’s status, or any complaints or other incidents
  • Promotes well being of patients through maintaining a clean and safe place
  • Treats all patients kindly and with dignity

General Qualifications for CNA at a Hospice

  • Must be at least 18 years.
  • Have transportation
  • Complete competency evaluation as spelled out in the Medicare Condition of Participation.
  • Have a diploma or GED
  • Have one year experience as an aide in a nursing home or home care type setting

How To Get Hired At A Hospice

If you want to be a CNA at a hospice, you must be a certified CNA, which means you have to have at least 75 hours training in a state approved program and then pass a required state exam.

The average wages for a CNA who works at a hospice was over $10 an hour when it was recorded in 2006, but has probably risen since then, as they are in great demand. Between now and 2016, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that there will be a 28 percent increase in the need for CNAs in that timeframe.

Hospice CNA Job Is Stressful

A hospice CNA must help give comfort to patients who are nearing the end of their lives and give respect to both them and their loved ones. They will need to be good with people and at giving emotional support, as well as performing their medical duties. They need to get to know their patients and help relieve their pain however possible both mentally and physically. It is a very tiring and stressful job, but a very rewarding one at the same time as you are helping someone who needs it most, plus giving support to their family.

They can also help teach the family how to aid in the care of their loved one. That way up to the end, they family will feel more involved. The CNA may also take on simple chores so that the family can spend every last second with their dying loved one.

All in all they need lots of patience, and will undergo lots of stress. They need a friendly attitude and to be at ease with people. Yet, they must be able to handle it and still not interfere with their own lives or family. That can be a very hard thing and it isn’t for everyone. In a hospice, you can’t work there if you are afraid or don’t like to see people die.

So, take heart. If you can handle this type of environment, then it can be both rewarding and sad at the same time. But you will be helping someone when they need it the very most and can be proud of your decision to work in a hospice.

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Jakie S

I have been a CNA in the state of California since 1995. One of my passions in life is to help people and help others who want to expand their careers and become CNAs.

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