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The nursing assistant occupation requires constant activity. Nursing assistant daily duties include helping patients with mobility, dispensing medication, recording patient concerns and taking patient vital signs. In general, they provide basic health care services for patients in hospitals and long term care facilities, such as nursing homes.
Nursing assistants, sometimes referred to as “nurse aides,” are the front line of long term nursing care. They provide a variety of services that make the daily life of patients better. They often work closely with other nursing staff, including registered nurses and licensed practical nurses.
Typical Nursing Assistant Duties
Help Patients with Mobility. Many patients require nursing assistant help have problems with mobility. Some common nursing assistant duties include transferring patients to and from bed into wheelchairs, helping patients change clothes and even bathe.
Dispense Medication. Not all nursing assistants are authorized to handle medication. They are not able to diagnose patients, but may be asked to dispense medication to patients. This requires following a schedule to ensure each patient takes their medication(s) when prescribed.
Listen and Record Patient Concerns. Nursing assistants are often times the first line of health care professionals that work with patients. They are responsible for listening to patient concerns about discomfort, pain and other daily problems. A true nursing assistant cares about the patients and wants to resolve their problems. The worst nursing assistants translate patient discomfort as “complaints” or “whining” instead of being empathetic and caring.
Monitor Patient Vital Signs. Most nursing assistants work in facilities for elderly people. As a result, it is very important that the vital signs of every patient are closely monitored. Nursing assistant daily duties often require constant monitoring blood pressure before and after eating, taking body temperature, and monitoring blood sugar (glucose) levels for diabetic patients.
Nursing Assistant Training
Many nursing assistant jobs only require a high school diploma. However, most employers prefer employees who have training and hands on experience as a nursing assistant. Nurse assistant training can help candidates distinguish themselves from other applicants. There are many good nursing assistant programs that can help you get the skills and knowledge you need to be successful.