Are you holding off on becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant, or CNA, after hearing unpleasant things about the profession? You're not alone. Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions about CNAs and the work they do. These myths often make people think twice about entering the field. Don't let that happen to you. Learn the facts behind the most common myths about CNAs to make the most informed decision possible.
Top 5 Myths About Certified Nursing Assistants
Five especially common myths about CNAs include:
- Being a CNA is a Dead-End Job - Ironically, the main reason this myth won't go away is because so many CNAs progress to become RNs or to assume other roles in the healthcare field. Indeed, working as a CNA is far from being a dead-end job. For many people, it's the stepping stone they need to break into other, better-paying nursing and healthcare roles, although some choose to remain CNAs because they find the work so rewarding.
- CNAs Only Work in Nursing Homes - CNAs play vital roles in nursing homes, to be sure. However, their options aren't limited to assisted living centers and the like. While nursing home jobs tend to be the most plentiful, CNAs can easily find work at hospitals, doctor's offices, urgent care centers, and clinics. Many act as home healthcare aides, visiting and caring for patients in their homes. If you'd rather not work in a nursing home, there are plenty of other options to consider.
- It's Always Easy to Find a Great Job - True, but though it may be that there's a nursing shortage, CNAs are by no means guaranteed excellent jobs whenever they need them. Like any other job, CNAs with more relevant work experience and more advanced credentials tend to have an easier time landing desirable jobs. Early in your career, you might have to start with a less-than-ideal position. Consider it putting in your dues. As you accrue more experience and develop a more impressive resume, more opportunities will become available to you.
- CNAs Only Do Grunt Work - Some people have a disparaging outlook on CNAs because they think these healthcare workers strictly handle the most menial and unpleasant tasks. Much of the work a CNA does is challenging and unpleasant, to be sure. Here's the thing: It's important too. It makes a difference in people's lives. CNAs are often the first to notice when patients need extra help. Furthermore, as CNAs accrue more experience, they are often able to work their way up to new roles that allow them to assume different responsibilities.
- The Work isn't Worth It - Finally, many people feel that CNAs aren't compensated well enough for the work they do. Sadly, this causes many folks who would be great CNAs to seek work in other fields. CNAs who are compassionate and who truly want to make differences in patients' lives never feel that the work isn't worth it. Money is just one way to be compensated for work. In addition to being paid, CNAs enjoy the satisfaction of knowing they make a positive difference in people's lives each and every day.
Don't let rumors and untruths about CNAs and the work they do deter you from entering the field. The work isn't right for everyone, of course, but for the right person, being a CNA can be incredibly rewarding. It can also open up many exciting new doors in your future.