CNAs provide invaluable patient care, and they give attentive care and support to those who need it the most, particularly elderly patients. In order to become a CNA you must first complete a state approved school, take a state exam, and become Certified as a Nursing Assistant (CNA). At this point, the student may choose to go back to school and take the Home Health Aide Class and become a CHHA (Certified Home Health Aide).
The CNA and Home Health Aide can work in a wide variety of settings. Nursing homes, hospitals, adult daycare centers, personal homes and assisted living facilities all require the Certified Nurse Aide and/or Home Health Aide to act as a helpful liaison between the RN (Registered Nurse) or the LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse) and the patient.
Certified nursing assistants provide basic patient care under the direct supervision of the nurses responsible for providing direct patient care. CNAs may spend more time with patients than anyone else on the health care team. For this reason, they can easily form lasting connections with patients, especially when they work in extended care facilities, where the same patients are cared for each day. Therefore, communication skills become an important part of the students educational experience.
CNA and CHHA programs may also be a prerequisite for students who need direct patient care experience as an admission requirement for a higher level health care program or for those who wish to test their interest in health care as a career. Individuals might also consider CNA and/or CHHA training if they are interested in working in health care to support their education.