5 Traits All CNA’s Must Have

September 12, 2013 in Medical Careers


With the healthcare industry continuing to offer a wide range of career opportunities, many people have dedicated themselves to figuring out where they fit in. Of course not everyone is cut out to be a physician, registered nurse or other types of key positions in the field. However, there are other nursing jobs available that play an equally important role in helping medical facilities run smoothly and ensure the best care for patients. Certified nursing assistants are a prime example.

More commonly known as CNAs, certified nursing assistants are responsible for a number of tasks that are directly related to patient care. While they do not have the same amount of extensive training as a registered nurse, their contribution to hospitals, nursing homes, private practices and in-home care situations is essential.

Although becoming a CNA only requires a high school diploma (or equivalent) and a nursing assistant certificate, there are other very important factors that make for a successful and effective CNA.

Peak Physical Condition

It might not be obvious to the average person but certified nursing assistants have a very physically demanding occupation. Anyone would doesn’t have strong legs or cannot be on their feet for long periods of time will not be very happy in this type of job. CNAs are required to be on their feet for many hours throughout the day.

Unlike a regular 9-5, certified nursing assistants must always be ready to help with patients and don’t typically have frequently scheduled breaks. When people are in need, the CNA must be there. This calls for individuals in good physical shape who have no problems with endurance.

Able to Adapt to Change

People who are creatures of habit and feel more comfortable in stable work environments won’t be suitably matched in a career as a certified nursing assistant. The needs and demands of medical facilities is never routine and CNAs must be ready to tackle whatever challenge comes their way, especially in case of emergencies.

Think Quickly on Their Feet

Similar to the trait listed above, there will be times when CNAs have to make important decisions on the fly. Being able to stay calm, rational and professional during an emergency is crucial to patient care. People who tend to panic easily, get flustered or who don’t do well with being under pressure won’t find themselves very comfortable in a certified nursing assistant position.

Attention to Detail

The best CNAs are those who do well with handling tedious tasks. Multitasking is a staple in this occupation and certified nursing assistants are expected to not only execute their laundry list of tasks but also remain detail oriented throughout the process. Failing to read charts correctly, not being observant of a patient’s behavior or administering the wrong medical dosage could literally mean life or death for a patient.


CNAs come into contact with medical staff and patients from all walks of life on a regular basis. From the nicest to the most grueling personalities, certified nursing assistants must be able to remain professional and personable no matter what.

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