How To Start Your Career as a CNA

How To Start Your Career as a CNA

You’ve been watching the news and are eager to help. Perhaps you’ve always had a heart for taking care of the elderly. Or maybe you’ve just been doing your same old nine-to-five for a while and are eager for something more fulfilling. Whatever your reasons, here you are, eager to know how to start your career as a CNA.

First of all, congratulations! In clicking on this blog, you’ve already completed your first step on the journey. You’re seeking out more information. Allow us to help you take your next steps.

Enroll in CNA Courses

Most states require CNAs to take a prescribed number of hours of CNA training courses. These courses will teach you the basic skills necessary for being a CNA, including:

  • Taking vitals
  • Moving patients
  • Patient hygiene and perennial care
  • Intubations
  • Controlling infection
  • Nutrition and other basic patient needs

You will also learn everything you need to know about your next step: the CNA exam.

Take the CNA Exam

Here in Florida, you can technically skip step one and go right into the CNA exam. You’ll start by paying a fee ($140 here in Florida) and undergoing a level 2 background check. After you clear the background check, you will be able to take the exam, which involves two sections. The first is a list of 60–75 multiple-choice questions. The second is a skills test where you will have to demonstrate several practical nursing skills.

If you fail the first time, don’t despair. A potential CNA gets up to three attempts. Even if you fail three times, you will still be able to retake the test after completing an approved CNA program.

Determine a Career Route

Although CNAs all possess a similar set of skills, that doesn’t mean that their jobs all look the same. There are a plethora of job settings to chose from as a CNA, and each one will give you a slightly different-looking career. As you receive your CNA license, you’ll have to decide what setting will best utilize your skills and temperament. Some of the more common CNA settings include:

  • Nursing homes
  • Hospitals
  • Private practices
  • In-home care
  • Prisons

When you’re trying to choose a job setting to pursue, consider the types of patients or residents you’re most apt to care for, how consistent of a work schedule you want, and how big of a team you want to work with.

Get the Job!

Once you know where you want to work, starting your career as a CNA is just a matter of applying. In most cases, you will apply to the company itself. In others, you can work for an agency that will send you to job sites. The more experience you acquire, the more likely you are to get more lucrative CNA positions, such as those in hospitals.

Ready for your next step? Our Jacksonville, FL CNA Courses are here to help you start your journey. And believe us, it’s a journey worth making.

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