The CNA plays a vital role in many health care facilities including hospitals, long term care centers and rehabilitation clinics. Some are employed in private residences for clients who need help with daily activities. A CNA works closely with their patients, often developing a warm and affectionate rapport with them. The capacity for sympathy and understanding is essential to the CNA, who will be responsible for much of the daily care of their patients.
A CNA job is not easy, but it is frequently rewarding. In any setting, the CNA assists patients with everyday activities like combing hair and brushing teeth. They may help residents get dressed, eat meals and bathe. Assisting patients to get in and out of bed is also regularly among their duties. They may also be responsible for transportation to surgeries and exams. In some facilities, the CNA will coordinate field trips and group activities in addition to their usual chores. The ability to take vital signs and observe changes in a patient’s condition are indispensable to the professional CNA. Sometimes a CNA is called upon to help with minor medical procedures or tidy up rooms.
Before gaining employment as a CNA in California, individuals must complete a proper training course and obtain their state certification. The certification must be renewed on a regular basis, and the CNA is expected to complete continuing education courses throughout their career to help them maintain their certification.
In Oakland, prospective CNAs have many state approved training programs from which to choose. One of the most prestigious is offered by Oakland Adult & Career Education. The CNA program has been provided by this facility for more than 30 years and boasts a distinguished selection of instructors. Typical CNA courses here last 10 weeks, after which students are prepared to take the certification exam.
At the Quest Nursing Education Center, students find a full course program and competency testing on site. The central location in downtown Oakland makes it easy to commute, and the accelerated program gets students working in short order. Programs generally require between four and six weeks of attendance.
With the CNA training program offered at CPR for Life Training and Healthcare Education, students can be ready to work within about 21 days. In this program and others like it, students will encounter subjects like nutrition, taking vital signs, patient’s rights, patient care skills and emergency procedures.
Lifeline Healthcare Consultants offers a solid training program in an accelerated format. Class sizes are kept deliberately small to encourage interaction between students and teachers. This school also provides comprehensive placement services after graduation and certification.
A residential facility like the Bay Area Health Center is another great place to receive CNA training. Like other residential facilities, this center provides free training in exchange for the student agreeing to work there for a specified period of time. Such programs offer intensive hands-on experiences that are invaluable to the aspiring CNA.
People hoping to become a CNA in California must be at least 16 years of age and must provide fingerprints prior to entering a training program. Individuals with felonies on their records will likely not be enrolled in a training program. Most candidates must also have a thorough medical exam that certifies they do not have serious communicable diseases before receiving training.
The job of the CNA is full of challenges, but as the CNA performs vital services to a portion of the population that is very much in need of their assistance, it is a rewarding job as well. Compassionate, sympathetic individuals will thrive in this growing career field.