CNA is the abbreviated term for a certified nursing assistant, who helps the patients in taking good care of their health and recovering as soon as they can from their illnesses. A work of a certified nurse assistant is supervised by a registered nurse. Certified Nursing Assistant can also be called as a Patient Care Assistant or a Nursing Assistant in short. The term “State Tested Nurse Aid” also refers to the same.

They are required to play a variety of roles in a medical organization and they can work in diverse settings. They have a great demand in nursing homes, private homes, and adult day care centers, etc where they are required to act as a link between the nurse and the patient.

CNA Tasks and Responsibilities

Relational activities:

  • Basic care of the patients- They maintain the cleanliness of the patients besides helping them in bathing, dressing, shaving and exercising. They investigate their health on a regular basis and make sure that their surroundings are neat and clean. They also feed those patients using a food tube that are incapable to feed themselves. The assistant nurses are trained to help the patients in changing rooms and beds safely.
  • Examining and describing the patient- The job of a CNA requires examining the essentials such as body temperature, blood pressure, and pulse of the patients. They are also required to check the height and weight of the patients on a regular basis. Then they report it to the nurse for further proceedings.
  • Providing emotional and social support to patients- A CNA should help the patient in recovering immediately by building a positive atmosphere for the patient. He should provide social, moral and emotional support to the patient to help him recuperate easily.
  • Controlling infection- It is the duty of the assistant nurse to follow a suitable procedure in evading the spread of any kind of germs and spores which transport diseases.
  • Acting as a link between the patient and the nurse- The role of a CNA demands a great deal of effort in maintaining a liaison between the patient and the nurse. This will assist a patient in getting appropriate treatment by the nurse.

CNA Qualification and Skills Required


The essential qualifications and certifications of a cna job description for resume include:

A person interested in adopting this profession as a career has to qualify the exam of CNA known by the name of the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program NNAAP which is approved by the state. The qualifying score in this exam is 75% and the exam is separated into 2 parts- written and experimental. For achieving any kind of certification in this field, the person has to register himself with a medical institution or in a training program.

The person is required to complete the certification within a period of a maximum of 2 years. He can take the exam three times within 2 years after the training. The clinical test along with the theoretical test is of equal importance and should be given equal attention. After taking the CNA certification, the candidate is registered in the state registry of a nursing assistant.


A skill is a capacity developed by training. There are certain core skills in every profession which are mandatory for performing the job efficiently. The professionals having requisite skills are really very important for the profession.

  • Basic care of the patients
  • Complete knowledge of emergency situations
  • Positive response to patient’s problems
  • Reporting patient’s condition to nurse accurately
  • Responding immediately to patient’s requests- regular or emergency requests
  • Reporting about any patient’s incidents to nurse or physician and dealing with it effectively.
  • Compassionate to understand the problems of patients and providing necessary help to them.
  • Effective interpersonal skills
  • Keen observation and efficient description of patient’s details.

Professional growth

There are lots of opportunities for CNAs to work in a variety of settings like hospitals, home care and clinics. The demand for CNAs is expected to increase by 21% by 2014 as the medical field is growing rapidly. With the growth of the medical field, the demand for health care professionals is rising to provide quality health care to the patients. The earning potential of nursing assistant is good and there are varied growth opportunities in this field as well.

The certified nursing assistant can pursue advanced courses to become a registered nurse. This creates an increased demand for health professionals. The nursing assistant is an entry-level position having the lowest salaries. The nursing assistant can take up advanced training and courses to become a registered nurse with higher salaries. The salaries of nurse assistants also vary depending on the number of shifts, location permanent or contractual job.

The nursing assistants working under private contracts, at nights can definitely earn more. According to, the CNAs working in schools, government departments, franchise or those who are self-employed are earning the highest unlike those working with companies and colleges.

Published by Sarah Samson

Sarah Samson is a professional career advisor and resume expert. She specializes in helping recent college graduates and mid-career professionals improve their resumes and format them for the modern job market. In addition, she has also been a contributor to several online publications.

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