What Is a CNA? Job Description and Career Guide

Caregiver helping elderly patients
A Certified Nursing Aide (CNA) is a health care professional who provides personal care to patients in various settings. CNAs are essential members of a patient’s health care team. They help patients with various basic needs like bathing, feeding, taking medications, and more. Being a CNA is a great step into the health care industry. It is a rewarding profession, and it helps prepare you for advanced positions in health care. This article will help you learn everything about a CNA and how to earn your CNA certification at WisCaregiver Careers and take the next step into a nursing career.

What Does a CNA Do?

CNAs perform a wide variety of duties to ensure the well-being of their patients or clients. They work directly with patients under the supervision of registered nurses or other medical professionals. Some of the responsibilities of a CNA include the following:
  • Helping patients with routine tasks such as eating, exercising, and other personal care tasks
  • Monitoring and recording information such as food and liquid intake
  • Ensuring a patient is comfortable by attending to their needs
  • Monitoring the patient’s condition and reporting any issues to other health care personnel
  • Turning, repositioning, and ambulating patients
  • Assisting with some medical procedures
The tasks performed by CNAs depend on the patient they are handling. Generally, a CNA spends more time with patients, understands their health status, and ensures they are safe and comfortable.
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Is a CNA Considered a Nurse?


While CNAs are not considered nurses, they work alongside nurses, physicians, and other health care providers. They assist nurses and work as the frontline contact between health care providers and patients. CNAs are often the frontline contact person for patient families. Nurses work in a supervisory capacity where they advise, correct, and oversee the work of a CNA. While you’re not a nurse, being a CNA sets you up for a nursing career and helps you gain the experience needed in this field.


Where Do CNAs Work?


A CNA can work in various health care settings, including nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, and adult care centers. By pursuing your career as a CNA, you’ll have a wide range of employment opportunities to choose from. In most cases, CNAs are needed in nursing homes, long-term care centers, and home health care.

You can work in any setting you’re interested in and most comfortable with. Typically, being a CNA is a rewarding career that allows you to help elderly and frail residents live their best life in your community.


Pros of Becoming a CNA


Becoming a CNA is one of the best ways to begin your career in the health care industry. Being a CNA offers a wide range of benefits to anyone passionate about helping others and giving back to the community. Some of the pros of becoming a CNA include the following:

  • Flexibility: Becoming a CNA allows you to work on a schedule that’s convenient for you. You can work many combinations of first, second, or third shifts, and weekends.
  • High in demand: With a critical shortage of caregivers in Wisconsin, being a CNA is a rewarding career. There are more and more job opportunities available to Certified Nurse Aides.
  • Giving back to the community: Working as a CNA allows you to improve and make a difference in the lives of your patients.
  • Fit family into the work commitment: CNAs spend more time with their patients, allowing them to know them better and be there for them, especially during challenging times.
  • Stepping up the career ladder: With fast-track programs, becoming a CNA is the easiest and fastest way to enter health care. Rather than committing to a long-term nursing program, a CNA can start earning money in as little as three weeks. As a CNA, you’ll interact with and share many responsibilities with nurses, giving you the experience needed to enter nursing or future management positions in nursing homes or assisted living facilities.

How Do I Get My CNA Certification? Contact WisCaregiver Careers


Becoming a CNA is a great job opportunity that also sets you up for a career in nursing and other health care areas. To become a Certified Nurse Aide, you will be required to complete a state-approved program. Employers and the State of Wisconsin partnered to make it easy for individuals to get CNA certification through WisCaregiver Careers.

WisCaregiver Careers is a free program that trains and provides jobs, incentives, and rewards to individuals who pursue a caregiving career. By joining our program, you’ll get employed by a participating nursing home that pays for your CNA training and testing. After getting your certification, you’ll also receive a $500 bonus after six months on the job, full-time or part-time. Contact WisCaregiver Careers today to get started in your health care career path.

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