Essential Qualities of a Nursing Assistant
3 Qualities that Make a Good Nursing Assistant
A Certified Nursing Assistant or STNA helps patients with daily activities like eating, bathing, dressing, etc. in hospitals and long-term care facilities. They play a very important role in the healthcare system, especially regarding caring for the elderly.
If you are planning to sign up for STNA classes and do not know if you are suited for the job, here are the top three qualities that make a good nursing assistant:
1. Being Observant
Some call it a sixth sense, some call it intuition, and some prefer calling it having good observation skills. Whatever term you prefer, it is extremely important for a nursing assistant to pay attention to small details, especially when working with senior patients. A good nursing assistant is always on the lookout for small changes that could signal potential problems. Minor changes like new bruises, a loss of appetite, frequent thirst, high blood pressure, etc. must be reported to the patient’s physician. Sometimes, paying attention to small details like this could be the difference between life and death. This is why STNAs prepare detailed charts that record vital statistics, including previous illnesses, medications, and other relevant information.
2. Having Plenty of Patience
This is one of the most important skills needed to be an STNA. This is especially important when dealing with the elderly because sometimes patients become scared, confused, or even suspicious of the people around them. Some could become aggressive or constantly complain about everything. Although it is difficult not to react when constantly faced with such negative attitudes and behaviors, it is part of what a nursing assistant’s job entails. Patients recovering from an illness or injury may be in pain, and other common issues like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease can sometimes cause changed to a patient’s personality. Patience becomes key when having to deal with these types of situations.
3. Having Good Communication Skills
Often times it’s not just what you say but how you say it. A nursing assistant’s typical day involves communicating with doctors, nurses, patients, patients’ families, and other involved parties. It is important to be able to adapt your tone and words when communicating with each of these groups. For example, you have to be careful not to use too much medical terminology or other jargon with patients or their families. Or nursing assistants may need to speak slowly and deliberately when communicating with elderly patients or those hard of hearing. With doctors and nurses, you must summarize the patient’s condition quickly as they are often in a hurry. The ability to communicate well can help to improve your patients’ care.
If you have any or all of the above skills and are considering enrolling for STNA classes in Toledo Ohio, visit us online or call 419.866.0555 to speak with a representative.