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What 5 Qualities Make a Good Nursing Assistant?

Posted: March 3, 2021 by Kasey Bowser
Nursing assistant students working on simulation patient in the lab.
Turn your compassion and empathy of helping people into a fulfilling career.
 


Nursing assistant instructor teaching students how to move a patient into a wheelchair. At Pima Medical, you will learn from experienced instructors in real-world lab settings.
A Certified Nursing Assistant or CNA helps patients with daily activities like eating, bathing and dressing. They work in hospitals, long-term care facilities, clinics, retirement communities, home healthcare agencies and more. They play a very important role on the healthcare team, especially regarding caring for the elderly.
 
If you’re interested in this rewarding path, but aren’t sure you’re suited for the job, below are some personal qualities that make a good nursing assistant.
 
  1. Observance. It’s extremely important for nursing assistants to have the ability to pay attention to small details. The smallest changes could be a major health problem for their patient, especially with the elderly. Minor changes like new bruises and a loss of appetite must be reported to the patient’s physician. Sometimes, paying attention to small details like this could be the difference between life and death.
     
  2. Emotional Stability. It takes a strong-willed, compassionate and caring person for this type of career. Caring for patients can be stressful, especially those who are struggling with their health or nearing the end of their life. Being supportive and strong for them and their families is crucial.
     
  3. Patience. You will need to have an encouraging and calm demeanor while caring for someone who may have just had a stroke and is learning how to dress again or helping patients walk after surgery.
     
  4. Communication Skills. Nursing assistants or CNAs have to communicate with doctors, nurses, caseworkers, families, patients and other healthcare team members daily. It’s important to be clear and detailed as much as possible with what you’ve observed while caring for your patient. You will need to listen well, offer support and give clear instructions.
     
  5. Compassion and Empathy. These are qualities that can’t be taught as a nursing assistant. To have the ability to show compassion and put yourself in someone else’s shoes and understand how they’re feeling is a much-needed trait to have while in this career.
     
If you’re looking for a fulfilling career in healthcare and have the qualities it takes for patient care, the nursing assistant (CNA) program could be a good fit for you. Pima Medical’s Nursing Assistant program is approximately six weeks long, which can get you working in the healthcare field quickly.
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