Students, who are going to choose nursing assistant as their career, must have a clear understanding of advantages and disadvantages of being a CNA. Though, the job of a nurse aide is pleasing and rewarding, but at the same time it is challenging and demanding too. The road to enter in this profession is very easy, but many times these professionals struggle with the demands of the job.
Here are the pros and cons of this career.
- A Sense of Fulfilment
This career provides you a sense of fulfilment that you are contributing for the welfare of the society.
- Financial Aid
You need not to expend enormous amount of money or time in becoming a certified nurse aide. The training duration is 4 to 6 weeks. If you can’t afford the fee of the training program, you can seek for financial aid (scholarship or grants).
- Several Job Opportunities
As compared to the average growth of all occupations, the growth prospects for nursing assistants are very high. 18% increase in the demand of nurse aides by 2018 is anticipated by the United States Bureau of Labour Statistics. The increasing demand may be attributed to the reforms in the health care industry and increase in the number of aging and sick population.
- Job Security
Healthcare is an indispensable component of the economy. Despite of economic turmoil, the demand of a nurse aide remains unaffected. It’s a recession-proof profession.
CNAs earn a handsome salary and other perks, like medical insurance, good overtime, paid holidays and retirement benefits. According to payscale.com, nurse aides can earn the median yearly salary from $17,691 to $31,207. The mean hourly income varies from $9.31 to $12.21.
- Many Working Alternatives
Nursing assistants are not restricted to work only in hospitals. They can do jobs in day care centers, clinics, long term care facilities, retirement communities, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, hospice, residential care facilities, etc.
- Flexible Job
You have the liberty to decide your working hours. You can work as a part-time employee or a full-time worker.
- Demanding Work
These professionals are ought to perform several types of work, like shifting the patient from bed to wheelchair or vice-versa, cleaning the patient’s room, collecting blood and urine samples, etc. All these tasks are demanding and challenging.
- Low Pay
Nurse aide positions are regarded as ‘entry-level’ in the healthcare industry; therefore, the pay is very low and is little above the minimum wages. In comparison to other nursing professionals (like, registered nurses, licensed practical nurses), the salary of certified nursing assistants is very unappealing.
- Dealing with Patients
As a nurse aide, you have to deal with different types of patients. You might have to face the verbal and physical abuses from the aggressive and annoyed patients, which is a very daunting situation.
- Dealing with Inevitable Circumstances
Nursing assistants are required to work closely with the terminally ill and dying patients. Sometimes you may feel hopelessness as you are not able to assist these patients as much as you really want to. Such circumstances can take an emotional toll.
- Need Additional Training for Career Advancement
In reality, there is a very few or no opportunities for growth with this job. If you want to move to higher levels, you need to take additional training or higher education.
- Job Burnout
Nurse aides have hectic work schedules. In case of emergencies, these professionals ought to work for long hours and even on weekends or holidays. Sometimes, you don’t get time even to think about yourself. You may feel that there are not adequate hours in a day to finish all the duties and may begin to experience job burnout.