Medical field has spread it wings to many directions. Many healthcare branches are catering to different needs of patients. For example, some healthcare facility may focus only on diseases related to heart, while others may specialize in bones, old age, diabetes, etc. Depending on the facility and the services they are dealing in, the duties to be performed by a nurse assistant vary.
Students who are taking CNA training with a mind frame of gaining an employment in the medical sector learn everything about the duties to be performed by a nurse assistant. The crash course they take for joining a healthcare industry focuses on major routine activities each healthcare setting conducts. This means that they are ready to work in any setting with the knowledge gained through training.
Since they can take a nursing job in any healthcare setting, their duties may not be the same. For instance, a hospital nurse assistant would perform different responsibilities than the duties of a nursing home assistant. If you compare the treatment and services provided by a hospital with a nursing home, the former will always have an upper hand in this regard.
Then there are other places like private clinics, day-care facilities, adult care centers, centers for physically and mentally challenged patients, and rehabilitation centers. People willing to work in a nursing position need not have to bother about the duties of all these facilities. Though hospitals have different units that specialize in a particular treatment, what matters the most is the nursing care.
Most of the nursing duties will depend on the patients’ conditions. If a patient, who cannot move his/her hands or completely bed-ridden will need help in everything from brushing, bathing, grooming, eating, toileting and in moving when the treatment is scheduled.
It is the duty of the morning shift nurse assistants to complete all the above routine activities. They have to raise the bed with a lever so that patients are in a comfortable position to brush their teeth. When brushing the teeth is done, they have to assist them with toileting. They have to assist patients up to the toilet if they can move, or else they need to provide them with a bedpan.
Giving a bath to the patients will also depend on their conditions. Nurse assistants have to give a dry bath to bed-ridden patients. If patients can have a shower-bath, nurse assistants have to take them to the bathroom and help them get cleaned. When the bathing process is over, nurse assistants have to comb patients’ hair and help them in dressing. Completing all these tasks for each patient is not a tiring work. However, when the number of patients is more, it can surely make nursing assistants tired.
Another important and regular duty to be performed by a nurse assistant is to take vitals. Nursing assistant cannot skip or ignore this routine task no matter how boring it may be for them. Because vitals are important in learning the patients’ conditions, nursing aides have to record and monitor the differences after a regular interval.
Next, feeding patients with the right amount of food intake is also important. Doctors are the best to decide what type of nutrition and how much amount of calories each patient need. Going through their ailments and body needs, doctors make a chart of the type of food for patients. They also mention the time when they should be given the food. The nursing assistants have to follow the nutrition chart and ensure that patients are being fed with proper food. Many patients may not be in a condition to eat with their hands. Such patients need to be fed by nursing aides with a support desk or by shifting them to the dining hall.
The next in the list of duties to be performed by a nurse assistant is maintaining hygiene. Hygiene is important to protect patients from infection and help in recovering. Nurse assistants have to change bed linens, soiled and surgical dresses every day.
Among all these duties to be performed, the main responsibility of nursing assistants is to provide mental and emotional support to patients. Patients struggling to get back to their normal life need more than treatment. Nursing aides should take up this challenge and assist such people in dreaming for healthy and longer lives. Since doctors and registered nurses cannot provide individual attention to each patient, nursing assistants to shoulder this responsibility. Their main aim of employment is to assist patients and provide each of them with individual nursing care.