The Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) in the hospital is a medical professional who serves as part of the care delivery team. The essential functions performed by the CNAs include:
- Obtaining patients’ vital signs
- Assisting patients with daily activities such as walking, repositioning, or eating
- Performing emergency interventions, such as CPR
- Communicating with other medical professionals and family members
- Transporting patients
- Performing administrative duties such as data entry, answering phones, and monitoring patients
Working in the fast-paced hospital environment requires excellent customer service and teamwork skills. Communication is also essential as the CNA works alongside nurses, doctors, occupational and physical therapists, respiratory therapists, lab assistants, students, and others.
CNAs in the hospital may specialize in care for specific types of patients, but will also learn about different medical conditions and patient types as they float to assist other departments.
The hospital-based CNA may commit to working part-time or full-time and must be flexible to work a variety of shifts and shift lengths. Shifts include days, evenings, nights, and rotating weekends and holidays. Shift start times vary but lengths usually range from 8-12 hours per shift.