- Nursing assistants (NAs), often known as nurses’ aides, are available whenever personal care is required. Nursing assistants work in a variety of long-term care settings, including nursing homes, home care, assisted living, hospice, hospitals, community-based long-term care, penal institutions, and other long-term care facilities.
- Nursing aides support patients of all ages with day-to-day duties. They work under the supervision of a registered nurse, and because they have daily contact with each patient, they play an important part in their lives as well as in keeping the nurse informed about the patients’ conditions.
Nursing assistants help with a variety of responsibilities, including:
- Bathing and skincare
- Mouth and hair care
- Making beds
- Toileting assistance and catheter care
- Bowel and bladder care
- Taking vital signs (temp, pulse, blood pressures, etc)
- Helping patients walk with gait belts, walkers, cane, and other devices
- Assisting with range-of-motion exercises
- Transfer wheelchair-bound patients using safe patient handling devices
- Turning and positioning bedridden patients regularly
- Reporting all changes to the nurse
- Safety awareness
- Observing, reporting, and documentation
- Post-mortem care
Nursing assistant – Academic requirements
- Nursing assistants must complete a state-approved education program in which they learn the fundamentals of nursing and practice under supervision. High schools, community colleges, vocational and technical schools, hospitals, and nursing homes all provide these programs.
- In addition, nursing assistants usually go through a brief period of supervised on-the-job training to learn about the policies and practices of their specific company.
- The classes are usually taught by a registered nurse. The duration of training is determined by the program. The seminars provide an overview of what to expect on the job; however, once the nursing assistant is immersed in the daily routine of actual caregiving, his or her skill levels, and confidence skyrocket.