The Top 10 Skills Every CNA Should Possess

Certified Nursing Assistants, or CNAs, are caregivers who work under the supervision of an RN or LPN and provide crucial daily support to patients. CNAs work in various environments like hospitals, rehab facilities, assisted living facilities, and more. 

CNAs are required to balance hard technical skills and soft interpersonal skills to be successful in their role. We will break down 10 of those skills and why it’s important for all CNAs to possess them. Let’s get started! 

Five Soft Skills You Need as a CNA

As a Certified Nursing Assistant, it’s essential to have the technical skills needed to do the job, but the interpersonal skills that come with patient care are just as important. 

Here are five soft skills every CNA should have: 

  1. Communication: CNAs are responsible for relaying information effectively between patients, families, and other healthcare professionals, so communicating effectively is an especially important skill. 
  2. Empathy and compassion: Both are must-haves for CNAs; they need to be able to put themselves in someone else’s situation, understand their feelings, and provide them with the personalized care they need.  
  3. Teamwork: A big part of being a CNA is working as a team with other healthcare professionals. 
  4. Patience: An exceedingly important skill because caring for patients who are ill or disabled can require extra time, and it’s essential to maintain an encouraging demeanor. 
  5. Adaptability: A skill a CNA must have because every day and every patient will be different. 

Five Hard Skills You Need as a CNA 

Hard skills are technical abilities that are taught, and that can be measured. Certified Nursing Assistants learn hard skills through their education and on-the-job training.

Here are five hard skills all CNAs need: 

  1. Patient Care Techniques and Education: CNAs are responsible for helping patients with daily tasks, like bathing, so knowing how to assist patients while helping them maintain dignity and self-esteem is crucial to the role. It’s also important to have the knowledge to educate patients and their families about their care.
  2. Vital Signs Monitoring: Understanding, monitoring, and documenting patient vital signs is a crucial skill for CNAs, who use those vital signs to monitor a patient’s overall health and communicate that with their team members, like RNs or LPNs, the patient, and the patient’s family. 
  3. Infection Control and Prevention: CNAs must understand the protocols to prevent and control infections, proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE), and proper hygiene to ensure their patients’ health and keep diseases from spreading. 
  4. Medical Terminology: All healthcare professionals need to be familiar with medical terminology to communicate effectively with their teammates, understand patient records, and explain orders a patient may not understand. 
  5. Documentation: Accurately recording patient vital signs, complaints, history, and responses to care are critical to the role of a CNA. 

Are you Ready to Start Your Healthcare Career as a CNA? Call Caregiver Training Institute Today! 

Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) play an irreplaceable role in the healthcare industry, and becoming a CNA can be the first step to a lifelong career in healthcare. 
Are you ready to make a difference in the lives of patients? Call the Caregiver Training Institute today at 503-257-0117 or complete a free online information session!

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