Have you ever thought about a career in nursing, but didn’t know how to get started? Or are you interested in nursing, but you aren’t sure if a nursing career is right for you?
If you’re like most people, then you probably don’t even know that there is a job out there that is perfect for you. It’s a job where you need little training, and can start working in a hospital within weeks. You work in a health care facility and perform tasks that keep elderly patients healthy and comfortable.
This job is called a Certified Nursing Assistant (or CNA, for short).
CNAs help patients by cleaning their beds, moving them around the room, washing them, and even helping with basic physical therapy. They don’t perform as demanding jobs like a more highly trained nurse, but their jobs are crucial to keeping elderly patients healthy and comfortable.
What are the benefits of a CNA job?
Because CNAs perform fewer jobs than a more highly trained nurse, they require much less training. More advanced nursing jobs, like RNs and LPNs, require up to 4 years of training and a college diploma. That’s a lot of time, and usually a lot of money, as well.
But CNA jobs usually require much less training.
In most cases, you can complete your CNA training within 4-8 weeks, and it only costs about $1,000. In most states, you can actually start working as a CNA without any training at all. If you like the job after you start working, you just get certified later!
For these reasons, many people try to get a CNA job before pursuing a job as an RN or LPN. Essentially, you can see if you like a job in health care before committing tens of thousands of dollars (and several years) to nursing school. Then, if you like the job, you can stay on as a CNA, or enroll in a nursing school to qualify as an RN/LPN in the future.
Of course, you don’t need to pursue a job as a more highly trained nurse once you get your CNA certification. In fact, many people prefer to remain a CNA because they enjoy caring for others, but don’t want all of the responsibility of a more highly trained nurse.
Should you become a CNA?
If you are looking to become a full-time RN or LPN, then starting as a CNA will give you a lot of practical experience. It’s a great stepping stone to start a long and happy career in health care! Becoming a CNA is a great choice for people who want to try a career in health care before committing to years of training and school. It is also a good job for people who want to make their living helping others.
Chris Salvato is a regular contributor to US CNA Classes Online, a website dedicated to helping people get all of the information necessary to start their career as a CNA, including a state-by-state directory of CNA classes.
- The Benefits Everybody Should Know About Nursing Aide Jobs - February 14, 2014