Allied Health Professions/
Nurses Aide/Nursing Assistant
Wherever there is a need for personal care, certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), or nurses aides, are there. Nursing assistants are the caregivers who, for the most part, help patients of all ages perform the most basic day-to-day tasks. CNAs work under the supervision of a nurse, and since they have extensive daily contact with each patient, they play a key role in keeping the nurse up-to-date on vital information about the patients' conditions.
Nursing assistants work closely with patients and provide assistance with such tasks as:
To learn more about this career, watch the video profile of "Nursing Aides, Orderlies and Attendants."
You can download, save and print a PDF of this career profile:
Nurses Aide September 2010 [PDF 75KB]
Due to the staffing shortage in recent years, a vast majority of nursing assistants find themselves in the challenging position of attempting to provide quality care to far too many patients at once. The turnover rate for nursing assistants is high, due largely to the job's heavy workload and physical demands.
Salaries for this career vary widely between states, and even between work environments. In Massachusetts, for example, an average starting CNA salary is in the neighborhood of $11-$12 hourly. Other states may have lower or higher starting rates. CNAs with five or more years experience can command up to $18 hourly.
Save money and earn your bachelor's in health sciences or healthcare management more quickly with maximum credit transfer at Excelsior. Our low tuition makes it affordable for you to earn your degree from accredited college while you earn a living. Receive up to 32 credits for your health-related occupational license. Learn more about Excelsior College ...
Nursing Assistant and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
Robert says the biggest surprise about studying to become a Nursing Assistant and EMT is the amount you learn. He never thought he’d know so much about the human body.
To Do and Not to Do: Writing the College Essay
Part 4: How to Attend College Without Going into Too Much Debt
Part 1: How to Attend College Without Going into Too Much Debt
The Impact of Private Loans on Choice of Repayment Strategy
Accreditation Matters (Part III): Financing Your Health Sciences Education at a Non-Accredited School
Accreditation Matters (Part II): Consequences of Attending a Non-Accredited School
Interprofessional Healthcare Education Means Better Patient Care
Applying for Financial Aid (Part II)
Why Diversity Matters in the Health Professions
Start preparing for your health career in high school
Finding Meaningful Work in Healthcare: Older Workers
Jobs of tomorrow will target highly-skilled, educated healthcare workers
Healthcare Reform 101
Job Corps lets you earn while you learn
Career ladders help health workers move up faster
A Step-by-Step Approach to Planning Your Health Career
Training programs to become a certified nursing assistant (CNA) can be found through the Red Cross, community colleges or medical facilities. Classes are generally taught by a Registered Nurse, and the length of training depends on the program. Through a facility, classes may run for two weeks, with a month or more of hands-on training to follow. The classes offer the basics of what to expect with this job; however, this is a career in which skill levels and confidence dramatically improve once the nursing assistant becomes involved in the daily routine of actual caregiving. Search for schools that provide training for this career.
To find out more about a career as a CNA and to contact current practitioners, use the active message board found at www.NursingAssistants.net. This site also contains recent articles, education opportunities and links to other CNA resources.
Search for funding opportunities related to this career
Search for enrichment programs related to this career
Search for academic degree and certificate programs related to this career
Allied Health Professions
Last updated: December 11, 2013
©2012 American Dental Education Association