hcnaHospice is a location where terminally ill patients are going to spend their last days.  This can be a very somber place.  It certainly takes some very special people to work in these locations.

If you are thinking that you would like to become a hospice CNA then you will want to make sure that you really understand what you will be doing on the job.  Having this information can help you make an informed decision about if you want to work in this location or not.  Here are some of the job responsibilities that you are going to have:

  1. Personal care-
    1. You may need to change the bed linens of the patient that you are caring for.
    2. It may be necessary for you to change the clothing of the patient.
    3. Giving assistance with the activities of daily living such as eating, brushing ones hair and teeth may also be needed.
    4. It may be necessary to learn about how to care for a patient when their loved ones are not there.  It will be important for you to hear what they are telling you and honor this.
    5. Medical care –
      1. You will need to take vital signs on the patient and be able to document these appropriately.
      2. If medications or IV medications need to be administered then the CAN may need to help the nurse with these things.
      3. Part of the hospice job description may include giving the patient a massage so that he or she will be comfortable.
      4.  Nutrition –
        1. The CNA must make sure that the patient is eating something, even if they do not have a really good appetite.  This can be difficult but it is necessary.
        2.  Support-
          1. Giving the patient and their family emotional support may be necessary for the CNA.
          2.  Housekeeping –
            1. You really could end up being a hospice CNA within someone’s home.  If that is the case then you will find that you may need to carry out some light housekeeping chores.  You may need to wash dishes, do light laundry or even run the sweeper from time to time.  Taking out the trash could also make that list.

Now that you know all of this, if you are still interested in doing this job then you will

see that you must become certified.  In order to do this you must participate in a state approved program.  After that, you will need to take the certification exam and pass it.  This can be difficult for some people since there is a skills section as well as a written section.  It might sound like a lot but it can be well worth it.  In fact, you will see that you could make at least $10.00 an hour when you start working in this field.  There are a few things that will greatly impact the amount of money you can make.

  • The shift that you are working can play a large role in just how much money you might make.  This is because there are some states that will require the employers to pay you more when you are working in the evening or at night.
  • If you are working overtime you will be sure to make more each year.
  • The amount of experience you have, along with any special training you have, can really impact the amount of money you are going to be bringing home.
  • How long have you worked in the field?  You will definitely make more than someone that is just starting out.

This job can be very rewarding but you must take your time to learn all that you can about it before you decide if you want to select this profession or not.  You really could end up doing some things that you are not happy about.  However, you have to realize that you will really be helping the family of each and every patient that you have.  In fact, you will be helping the patient as well.  You must remember that they are on their death bed and you want to be responsible for helping make them as comfortable as possible.  This is a very important job and it can be very rewarding.

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